Research Data Management

In recent years, research data management (RDM) has assumed an increasingly prominent place in scholarly communication, funder requirements, codes of academic practice, university research strategy and even national policy.

OCLC Research has followed these developments and responded with a program of work examining researchers' needs and the role of university libraries in supporting researchers and assisting universities in meeting emerging compliance requirements. OCLC has conducted qualitative and quantitative research and engaged the library community through Research Library Partnership working groups. Published findings position RDM within the broader landscape of an evolving scholarly record.

By examining the needs of stakeholders engaged throughout the data lifecycle, we aim to show the interconnectedness among needs and actions and provide practical guidance that improves data creation, management, curation and reuse experiences. Our research outputs also provide models for understanding RDM capacity acquisition as well as practical guidance for supporting researchers, and builds upon previous foundational work that situates RDM within the larger Evolving Scholarly Record.

Latest news

Just published: The Realities of Research Data Management: Part Three: Incentives for Building University RDM Services

In this third report in the series, Incentives for Building University RDM Services, the authors explore the incentives that inspired the acquisition of RDM capacity on the part of the four research universities described in the case studies, and describe both the general patterns and context-dependent circumstances that shaped these incentives. Based on the case studies, as well as the broader RDM landscape, the authors organized these incentives into four broad categories: compliance, evolving scholarly norms, institutional strategy, and researcher demand.

Read the latest report.

Newly published: Librarians' Perspectives on the Factors Influencing Research Data Management Programs in College & Research Libraries Journal

This qualitative research study examines librarians' RDM experiences, specifically the factors that influence their ability to support researchers' needs. Findings from interviews with 36 academic library professionals in the United States identify five factors of influence: 1) technical resources, 2) human resources, 3) researchers' perceptions about the library, 4) leadership support, and 5) communication, coordination, and collaboration. Findings show different aspects of these factors facilitate or constrain RDM activity. The implications of these factors on librarians' continued work in RDM are considered.

Read the article.


Developing RDM Capacity and Programs

Disciplinary Perspectives and Needs

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Most recent updates: Page content: 2017-03-30

Team Members

Rebecca Bryant, Senior Program Officer

Ixchel Faniel, Research Scientist

Brian Lavoie, Research Scientist

Constance Malpas, Strategic Intelligence Manager & Research Scientist