“Ubi amici, ibi opes: Where you find friends, there you’ll find riches.”
Plautus, 200 BC
“Where you find metadata, there you’ll find data.”
Antonius Mathus, AD 2014
Research is fundamental to all disciplines in academia and data output is often the result of this endeavour. Most universities view research data as a valuable asset that requires a management strategy to promote and support long-term data curation, preservation, access and re-use.
Universities need the resources to tie together the policies, infrastructure, tools, processes and training to support research data management. The Joint Information Systems Committee (Jisc) has played a key role in providing these resources to many universities through a range of programmes including the following:
- Repositories and Preservation Programme, which provided an investment of £14 million in Higher Education repository and digital content infrastructure.
- Information Environment supporting digital repositories and preservation, including cross-searching facilities across repositories; funding for institutions to develop a critical mass of content, preservation solutions and advice for the development of repositories.
- Jisc Managing Research Data (JiscMRD) programme, which supported UK academic institutions in their efforts to develop internal research data management policies to ensure data re-use.
The GoGeo service is another example of the Jisc commitment to UK academia to provide resources to securely manage and share research data that have a geographical (spatial) component. The free service offers the following resources for managing research data:
- Geodoc metadata editor tool, which allows users to create, edit, store, import, export and publish standards-compliant (ISO 19115, UK GEMINI, INSPIRE, Dublin Core, DDI) metadata records;
- GoGeo portal, which offers users the option of publishing their geospatial metadata records to public or private catalogues, the latter for those who want to control and restrict access to information about their spatial data;
- ShareGeo, a repository for users to upload and download spatial data; and
- geospatial metadata workshops, which use presentations and hands-on practicals to introduce attendees to geospatial standards, metadata, geoportals and the GoGeo service.
The ultimate survival kit for your spatial data is a guide that provides a concise overview of these GoGeo service resources which can serve as a complement to your current research data management practices if your datasets have a spatial component. This guide also shows how the GoGeo service resources can be used to manage your spatial data information (metadata) and share it with your project colleagues, or with researchers and students in your department or academic institution.
You’ll discover that
- it’s much easier and more efficient to use Geodoc to create and export a metadata record to bundle with its spatial dataset than it is to send the dataset without any information to a colleague who might return with questions. Your colleague can also import your metadata record to Geodoc to update if edits are made to your shared dataset.
- it’s much easier and more efficient to use Geodoc to create and publish metadata records to a private research metadata catalogue on the GoGeo portal than it is to send bundles of metadata records or spatial data information to fellow researchers.
The ultimate survival kit for your spatial data document offers more in detail about the possibilities, the potential that the GoGeo service has to offer for spatial data management and sharing, whether at the personal level, amongst trusted colleagues or visible to the world if you have no further need of your spatial data and wish to share it with others who could benefit from your research endeavours. There could be others who have data that could benefit your research as well?
Please contact me to request a copy of this guide. The guide will include a questionnaire, and if you answer the 10 questions, you will receive a GoGeo-Geodoc coffee mug filled with chocolates. There is nothing to write other than your name and address; each question can be answered with the tick of a box.
Thank you very much.
Geospatial Metadata Co-ordinator
The University of Edinburgh
Edinburgh EH9 1PR
My Desk tel: (0)131 651 1443
EDINA Help Desk tel: (0)131 650 3302
An electronic version of the The ultimate survival kit for your spatial data guide can be found on the GoGeo portal’s Geodoc login page at http://www.gogeo.ac.uk/gogeo/metadata/geodoc.htm