Breaking down the silos: collaboration to achieve best practice research data management
Curtin University in Perth, Western Australia has undertaken a staged rollout of research data management (RDM) to support its compliance with the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research.
The University took a four-pronged approach:
● Development of RDM governance
● Provision of storage specifically for research data
● Development of RDM services including a Data Management Planning Tool
● Development of RDM training and resources
The Office of Research & Development, Curtin IT Services and the Library collaborated on building RDM capability, in consultation with the Faculties. During development there was strong feedback from staff that research students must have access to RDM services as quickly as possible.
Officially launched in September 2014, the initial suite of RDM facilities included a data management planning tool, dedicated research data storage and a guide to RDM. The suite was introduced with an all-staff email message and a series of presentations to Faculty R&D committees. Additionally, early adopters championed the suite to their peers. Library staff attended School and Centre research seminars to deliver an introduction to RDM. Further data seminars for HDR students and supervisors were organised by the Graduate School of Research.
Over time, RDM was integrated into existing university procedures, including human research ethics approvals (January 2015) and HDR candidacy applications (September 2015) and animal research ethics approvals (November 2015). A new data publishing service was launched in April 2015 to support an Australian National Data Service-funded Major Open Data Collections project, the Digital Mineral Library.
Since its launch, over 1600 data management plans have been registered in the DMP Tool and more that 300TB of storage space allocated for research data, highlighting the success of Curtin University’s approach to the introduction of best practice research data management.