Research data - what is it?
Research data means facts, observations or experiences on which an argument, theory or test is based. Data may be numerical, descriptive or visual. Data may be raw or analysed, experimental or observational.
Some examples of research data include:
- laboratory notebooks
- field notebooks
- primary research data (including research data in hardcopy or in computer readable form)
- test responses
Want to know more? Check out this site: Boston University Libraries - What is "research data"?
Documentation of data management, including ownership, ethics, retention and disposal design is required under the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research and is a requirement for ARC and NHMRC funding.
Key things to think about throughout your project
Research Data Management is essential at all stages within the Research Data LifeCyle. A Data Management Plan will assist you to identify how you are going to capture and format, organise and store, share and reuse, and examine long term preservation options through out the various stages of a research project.
The above diagram created by Helen Morgan, is one example of various research data lifecycles available. If you would like to see other examples to get a clearer understanding, have a look at these:
National related policies
DCC managing research data
This short documentary produced by Piers Video Production, offers a unique insight into the importance of providing access to research data and the risks of not managing data effectively.
Ethical treatment of data applies not just to the collection or generation of data, but also to how the data will be stored, and how/if it will be made available.
Professional bodies, institution or funding organisation, follow the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research in order to maintain confidentiality of research data and primary materials by protecting the data from unauthorised access and use.