How University of Salford delivers long term open access and easy discoverability to its funded research data
Deriving 30% of its research funding from the EPSRC, the University of Salford required a reliable and scalable solution to the challenge of providing long-term open access to funded research data.
The Arkivum solution provides a straightforward way for researchers and principal investigators to store, manage and share their increasing volumes of research data while meeting funder requirements for open access.
While the IT Services Division at University of Salford has been providing centralised capabilities for research data, many researchers have been ‘doing their own thing’ and sourcing their own solution for their research data management (RDM) needs.
The extensive use by both researchers and principal investigators of memory sticks, external hard drives and cloud storage services like Dropbox and Google Drive has been the norm for researchers across the range of Schools at the University.
While devices and services such as these are easy to procure and use, they are not a sustainable, scalable or reliable way to manage large volumes of research data in a way that meets funder-mandated requirements for long-term open access (for example the expectations of the EPSRC that is providing the University with on average £2.2m a year in research funding and that expects data to be available for 10 years or more).
Limiting the scope of the project to initially just deal with the data arising from EPSRC- funded research (the immediate need), the University provide online access to recent and frequently accessed research data, and allow data to be submitted by researchers. Arkivum provides long-term archiving services for research data that is infrequently accessed, with guarantees against data corruption.
The University now has a centrally delivered and supported research data management service for researchers that complies with EPSRC mandates for data accessibility and long-term availability. The system provides researchers with a familiar and easy to use workflow that encourages compliance and as such provides a reliable and scalable way to make their data discoverable and sharable.
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