Jul 13 2012

DataPool Steering Group, first meeting

Steve Hitchcock

Before the UK took a break for the Diamond Jubilee weekend, DataPool had an important diary date of its own at the end of May, the first meeting of the project steering group, effectively ending phase 1 of the project.

The steering group includes senior managers and academics from the University of Southampton, and experts in running research data repositories elsewhere. This post collects and links to the documents and evidence that were circulated prior to the meeting or presented at it, and which informed discussion. We conclude by summarising and highlighting some of the main steers and outcomes of the meeting that will direct the project going forward to phase 2.

Collected documents for the Steering Group meeting

DataPool service model at the University of Southampton

A forthcoming report will give more detail on the SharePoint and EPrints developments. Similarly, another post here will consider progress with the institutional RDM policy and the accompanying guidance information.

Main steers and outcomes

So what did we learn from the meeting? Among such an eminent gathering and across a wide-ranging discussion it would be hard to represent all views in this short report. Important issues raised will be pursued in the project. To give an indication of some of those directions, here are just three of the more immediate actions identified by the project managers:

  1. There was endorsement for the concise policy guidance notes and iterative approach to engagement and evaluating progress. First guidance notes are now available, and the collection will be extended.
  2. The case study-based training guide was received enthusiastically and regarded as an ‘approach that could evolve incrementally’. Further case studies based on this model will be identified, and used for postgraduate training in more areas.
  3. More detailed disciplinary/multidisciplinary cost modelling case studies are needed to build evidence to support bids for significant institutional investment.

Overall, the meeting expressed a view that the project is working along the right lines, and it was interesting to note from our external advisers that in many cases we are dealing with similar issues to those faced by others.

We are grateful and thank members of the steering group for their commitment and contributions. With their encouragement and direction DataPool is able to tackle the challenges ahead with conviction.

Members of the steering group present at the meeting (University of Southampton unless otherwise indicated): Mark Brown (Chair and University Librarian), Philip Nelson (Pro-VC Research), Adam Wheeler (Provost and DVC), Pete Hancock (iSolutions, Director), Helen Snaith (National Oceanography Centre Southampton), Mylene Ployart (Associate Director, Research and Innovation Services), Graham Pryor (Associate Director, Digital Curation Centre), Sally Rumsey (Digital Collections Development Manager at The Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford), Louise Corti (Associate Director, UK Data Archive), Les Carr (Electronics and Computer Science), Simon Cox (Engineering Sciences), Graeme Earl (Humanities), Wendy White (Head of Scholarly Communication), Dorothy Byatt, Steve Hitchcock (DataPool Project Managers). Apologies from Jeremy Frey (Chemistry).