A “Newbie” Experience at the RDAP18 – Something for Everyone

At RDAP all are welcome, and we truly mean it!

In her article “A Newbie at the RDAP Summit, or How I Learned that the RDAP Summit is for Everyone” published  in The Journal of eScience Librarianship,  Oakland University Research Data Librarian Joanna Thielen shares her experience as a first time, ‘newbie’ from a mid to small size institution attendee at RDAP18. Moving quickly from “initial hesitation” to engaged enthusiasm, Joanna explains the benefits of the summit structure, topics, and the overall inclusive and collegial atmosphere which encourages collaboration and information sharing. She describes RDAP as a serious, yet welcoming conference regardless of who you are, what your position is, or where you come from.

“I encourage any librarian with even an inkling of interest in research data management, access, or preservation to attend.” – Joanna Thielen

She also notes that RDAP is not just for librarians and that the diverse community of  “people working in government libraries, cultural heritage institutions, industry, data science, and funding agencies” really makes RDAP an impactful and unique experience for all.

Thanks for sharing your experience Joanna. Indeed we would have to agree with you, that there is something for everyone at RDAP!

Meet our sponsors: NNLM, New England Region: Karen

The Annual RDAP Summit wouldn’t be possible without our generous sponsors. This year we’ve asked each organization sponsoring at the contributor level or higher to introduce one (or two) of their staff members to the RDAP Community through a short interview.  Take a moment to get to know some of the faces you’ll see at this year’s summit.

Today’s interviewee is Karen Coghlan, Education & Outreach Coordinator at the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, New England Region.

photo of Karen
Karen Coghlan, Education and Outreach Coordinator at the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, New England Region

Q: Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Karen Coghlan and I am the brand new Education & Outreach Coordinator at the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, New England Region hosted at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center.  I serve as the Liaison to NNLM Web Services Technology Center, Research Data Management Team, and Access to Biomedical information programs.

Q: Have you ever attended an RDAP Summit before?

This is my first RDAP summit and I am looking forward to the opportunity.

Q: What are you most looking forward to at this year’s Summit?

I am looking forward to attending the summit and learning about key development of research data management issues.  The seminar titled “Defining the Role of the Library in Research Data Management within an Institution” looks very intriguing.  I hope to use what I learn to better assist patrons of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine.  Also as prior IP attorney I am very interested in the “Intersection of Publishing and Data”, to see how issues are evolving.

Q: What data-thing or project has you the most excited right now?

I am very excited about the e-science symposium being hosted at the University of Massachusetts on April 5th, 2018.  The purpose of this event is to initiate and maintain a regional dialogue on e-Science, identify ways libraries can better support networked research, and ways that libraries can deliver relevant and effective research data management services at their institutions. The theme of this year’s Symposium is “Past and Future”.  You can also see work from all previous symposia here: http://escholarship.umassmed.edu/escience_symposium/

Q: What else should the RDAP community should know about you and NNLM?

The National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) advances the progress of medicine and public health by providing equal access to biomedical information. The NNLM New England Region produces the Journal of eScience Librarianship (JeSLIB), an open access, peer-reviewed journal advancing librarianship related to data-driven research across multiple disciplines.

Meet our Sponsors: Iowa State University: Erin and Curtis

The Annual RDAP Summit wouldn’t be possible without our generous sponsors. This year we’ve asked each organization sponsoring at the contributor level or higher to introduce one (or two) of their staff members to the RDAP Community through a short interview.  Take a moment to get to know some of the faces you’ll see at this year’s summit.

Photo of Erin Thomas, Science and Technology Librarian,
Erin Thomas, Science and Technology Librarian, Iowa State University Library.

Today’s interviewees are Erin Thomas, Science and Technology Librarian, and Curtis Brundy, Associate University Librarian for Scholarly Communication and Collections both of Iowa State University Library.

Q: Who are you and what do you do?

Erin: “I’m a Science and Technology Librarian at Iowa State University. I’m primarily the liaison librarian for our departments of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering, but I also teach data management best practices and work closely with our Data Services Librarian.”

Curtis: “I am the Associate University Librarian for Scholarly Communication and Collections at Iowa State University. My scholarly communications role includes coordinating our efforts in the areas of open data, open educational resources, and open access.”

Q: Have you ever attended an RDAP Summit before?

Curtis Brundy, Associate University Librarian for Scholarly Communication and Collections, Iowa State University Library.
Curtis Brundy, Associate University Librarian for Scholarly Communication and Collections, Iowa State University Library.

Erin: “I attended my first RDAP Summit last year and, obviously, felt the experience was valuable enough to return for a second year. The presentations and posters covered topics that left me with a lot of food for thought, and it was a great opportunity to meet other professionals who are interested in some of the same things that I am.”

Curtis: “I have not.”

Q: What are you most looking forward to at this year’s Summit?

Erin: “Looking at the program for this year, I think I’m most looking forward to the presentation on underserved data communities. This is something I’ve been becoming more interested in the more I get involved in data management and data sharing, and I’m excited to see it on the agenda for this year’s Summit.”

Curtis: “I’m excited to meet folks who are working on similar data initiatives. I’ve only been involved with research data since my arrival at ISU last year. So I still have lots to learn and look forward to doing so at the Summit.”

Q: What data-thing or project has you the most excited right now?

Erin: “Ithaka S +R and the American Society of Civil Engineers have partnered with libraries in the US and Canada to investigate the research support needs of scholars in Civil and Environmental Engineering. Iowa State University is one of ten institutions participating in this project and, as one of two ISU librarians involved, I have been busily interviewing researchers at our campus. A significant portion of this research focuses on the data management and sharing practices and needs of researchers in this field. I’m excited to see what our local results will be, as well as those from the other participating institutions, and how those results can inform our services going forward.”

Curtis: “At the moment, I’m most excited about our local data projects here at ISU. The library has partnered with campus IT and the Office for the Vice President for Research on ISU’s first dedicated data repository. Administered by the library, our ISU branded Figshare repository, DataShare, will launch in the coming weeks. In addition, we are working with our IT and OVPR partners to develop additional services and guidelines to encourage and support data sharing.” 

Q: What else should the RDAP community should know about you and Iowa State?

Curtis: The Iowa State University Library is excited to be a sponsor of the RDAP Summit and we look forward to seeing everyone in Chicago!

Meet our Sponsors: Digital Preservation Network: David

The Annual RDAP Summit wouldn’t be possible without our generous sponsors. This year we’ve asked each organization sponsoring at the contributor level or higher to introduce one (or two) of their staff members to the RDAP Community through a short interview.  Take a moment to get to know some of the faces you’ll see at this year’s summit.

Today’s interviewee is David Pcolar, Technical Officer, Digital Preservation Network (DPN).

David Pcolar, Technical Officer, Digital Preservation Network (DPN)
David Pcolar, Technical Officer, Digital Preservation Network (DPN)

Q: Who are you and what do you do?

I’m David Pcolar, Technical Officer, Digital Preservation Network (DPN). I coordinate the work of our preservation storage service providers, resolve member’s technical issues, and explore new workflows, tools, and techniques to improve services supporting DPN’s mission.

DPN is a 40+ membership organization investing in long-term, scalable digital preservation. Our mission is to preserve scholarly content for the next generation of researchers.

We are a dark archive for the academy.

DPN’s technical service is content transportation and tracking logistics, assuring content is viable in multiple preservation environments and providing geographic distribution.

Q: Have you ever attended an RDAP Summit before?

No, this is my first RDAP Summit.

Q: What are you most looking forward to at this year’s Summit?

Meeting attendees and better understanding their needs for data management practices.

Q: What data-thing or project has you the most excited right now?

DPN is rolling out a new service for large content and high-volume members. In a partnership with established service providers, the new service will support very large datasets and other large content streams to be quickly and cost-efficiently preserved.

Q: What else should the RDAP community should know about you and DPN?

DPN is part an organizational effort to develop a code of shared values for digital preservation providers. The working document is available at: http://bit.ly/Preservation_Code_of_Values

Meet our Sponsors: Figshare: Alan

The Annual RDAP Summit wouldn’t be possible without our generous sponsors. This year we’ve asked each organization sponsoring at the contributor level or higher to introduce one (or two) of their staff members to the RDAP Community through a short interview.  Take a moment to get to know some of the faces you’ll see at this year’s summit.

photo of Alan Hyndman
Alan Hyndman, marketing director at Figshare.

Today’s interviewee is Alan Hyndman, marketing director at Figshare.

Q: Who are you and what do you do?

Hello, my name is Alan Hyndman, I’m the marketing director at Figshare and have worked here for 6 years. Figshare is an ‘all in one repository’ for papers, data and non-traditional research outputs, working with institutions, publishers, funders and governments all over the world.

Q: Have you ever attended an RDAP Summit before?

Yes, this will be my third year in a row at RDAP and it is definitely my favorite North American conference to attend. RDAP is a chance to bring everyone in the data librarian community together to share stories, initiatives, pain points and innovative solutions.

Q: What are you most looking forward to at this year’s Summit?

I look forward to hearing about the big challenges for 2018 and beyond. This space is moving so fast that we went from talking about open data to FAIR data in a short amount of time, I’m curious to see what the next big thing will be. I’m also looking forward to hearing about the Figshare project at Carnegie Mellon University on the workshop Friday, they are doing very cool stuff.

Q: What data-thing or project has you the most excited right now?

I love data visualization and the potential it has to make research more accessible and exciting. A great example of this is the Oxford University Interactive Data Network, they use Shiny apps to query datasets on Figshare and plot them in a really cool ways. We loved their work so much that we partnered with them to do data visualization of our State of Open Data survey data and have some other collaborations coming up in 2018.

Q: What else should the RDAP community should know about you and Figshare?

People know us for being a data repository but since we started working with institutions 3 years ago they started asking us if they could migrate their paper repository to Figshare as well. We are of the opinion ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it’, sadly in a lot of cases paper repositories are broken, tired, out of date and not fitting for the modern researcher workflow. Several gap analyses later we have started building out traditional IR functionality to complement our existing data repository platform. A good friend of mine at one of my favorite institutions that we work with said to me “We have a paper repository and a separate data repository, but we can’t think of a good reason why”.

For me it makes most sense to have all research outputs living together in the same place, papers, data, code and all non-traditional research outputs. That’s easier for the researcher depositing, easier for the researcher discovering and means fewer systems for the institution to manage.  At the same time APIs and interoperability are really important to us, when a university is happy with their current setup we are happy to throw and catch data wherever we can.