To identify specific data curation and management competencies that would aid in the continued development of a data management curriculum and professional development supporting New England health sciences and science and technology librarians, and to gather data on the nature and progress of data services being provided by these librarians and those being demanded by their patrons.
Based on a content analysis of data services and e-science librarian job postings, selected library and information science schools¹ programs and curricula, and published case studies and related best practices, the team researched and developed questions for the survey. An assessment was created using SurveyMonkey. A small group of medical librarians tested the survey and offered feedback. The survey was revised and then disseminated to New England health sciences and science and technology librarians. After three weeks, the team collected and analyzed the results.
Results and Conclusion:
A quarter of respondents surveyed stated that they are already managing and curating data sets. This number has nearly doubled since the team's 2009 assessment of New England health sciences and science and technology librarians engaged in e-science. Almost half of respondents will be providing these services in the future; almost three quarters of respondents stated their library has or is in the process of creating a data management policy. Their responses to the competencies suggest that the portal curriculum focus on technical resources that would develop librarians¹ competencies in data literacy, curation and management by teaching skills such as scripting and programming languages and metadata and interoperability standards, as well as skills necessary to administer an institutional data repository. The data also suggest that a curriculum provide resources that address the non-technical competencies necessary to develop a data management policy, understand intellectual property and scholarly communication related to data. This research is helping the University of Massachusetts Medical School Lamar Soutter Library and National Network of National Libraries of Medicine New England Region (NN/LM NER) to develop its E-Science Portal data management curriculum and in-person professional development programming for its regional librarians engaged in e-science activities. In addition, this assessment illuminates the many challenges that health sciences libraries in New England are facing trying to engage in e-science. Thus, an area for future investigation is the strategies that libraries are using to deal with these challenges and overcome these obstacles.
- Data curation,
- data management,
- health sciences,
- New England
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/memorales/9/