Engaging Researchers with Research Data: What’s Next

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03 Aug 2020
Group(s) submitting the application: 
Meeting objectives: 


The objective of this meeting is to welcome everyone in the newly established Engaging Researchers With Research Data Interest Group, collectively agree on a common framework of activities, and begin work. This will be the first plenary session of the group as a formally established RDA Interest Group. The group was represented at BoF sessions at two previous RDA plenary meetings in order to develop a better understanding of the group’s dynamic and scan demanding areas for future work.


Many interesting initiatives are utilised by research institutions around the world to effectively engage with their research communities about research data. However, typically the only way to learn about these activities is to either attend a conference where a speaker explains their initiative or to already know someone who is engaged in that type of work. Relying on these opportunities to exchange good practice disadvantages those who cannot attend conferences and those who are just starting with research data management and don’t yet have robust professional connections. Our group addresses these problems by providing a network facilitating discussions and exchanging good practices. This network will focus on how to effectively engage with researchers about research data and developing resources to help research organisations increase their researcher engagement. A great example of the latter is the “Engaging Researchers with Data Management: The Cookbook” which was produced in the context of our informal group activities. 


During the P16 meeting, we will have an initial short presentation on the work done so far by the group, invite a diverse set of speakers to share their experiences on engagement activities, and decide on the task force groups to be set up and start work on some of the following deliverables:

  • Research engagement toolkit for low income countries

  • Toolkit for researchers: how to engage librarians with data management

  • Guidelines for what NOT to do when trying to engage with researchers

  • Podcasts describing existing case studies

  • Toolkits for how to get started for selected case studies

  • Compelling arguments to convince researchers about the benefits of data management

  • Interview questions to convince researchers about the benefits of data management

Meeting agenda: 


Collaborative Notes Link:  https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pl6dgTdiPMr4YsWDna4XQIjcc7dcDfyw2xG9...


  • Welcome (5 min)

  • Overview of the group’s objectives (15min)

    • Work done so far

    • Areas for future work (based on our P14 session)

    • Introductions for Lightning Talk presenters

  • Lightning Talks (15min)

    • 3 invited speakers to talk about how they perform engagement activities

  • Discussion about formulating Task Forces (finding task leaders and first plans) (45min)

  • Closing remarks (5min)

Target Audience: 

This topic is relevant to anyone supporting research data management at their institution. This particular meeting will focus on discussing potential deliverables, which can be influenced by and impact a variety of communities. A variety of stakeholders will be critical to this brainstorming. Please consider attending if you are a:


  • Librarian, data manager, data steward, or archivist—to discuss ways of exchanging best practices and discuss gaps in resources.

  • Researcher or student who wants to change practices among their peers—to discuss gaps or hurdles that prevent you from engaging with research data management or share success stories.

  • Member of an ICT (Information and Communication Technology) department—to discuss how technology can support researcher engagement at your institution.

  • Faculty management or senior executive at an institution or colleague from legal and financial support—to discuss how you can support (financially, administratively, legally, via policy) researchers and encourage an environment of research data management at your institution.

  • Funder, policy maker, publisher or member of the commercial sector—to share expectations of how researcher engagement with research data management fulfills policy and commercial goals.

Group chair serving as contact person: 
Brief introduction describing the activities and scope of the group: 

Previously, informal activities of the group focused on gathering case studies on how institutions engage with research data. This was started as a project under the umbrella of the Libraries for Research Data IG (at P12), which culminated in a deliverable: Engaging Researchers with Research Data: The Cookbook. The group presented the progress of its work at P13 and P14.

Over this period, community interest around the topic grew beyond libraries. With community members wishing to keep the discussions alive, it became necessary to think about the creation of a dedicated IG to allow the community to continue to exchange best practices and keep each other informed on innovative methods to stimulate researcher engagement with research data.

A new IG was discussed at P14 at a dedicated Birds of a Feather session with the current and prospective members of the interest group (70+ people on the informal mailing list) and the idea was enthusiastically received by the attendees. In addition, the attendees proposed several new deliverables that would be useful tools for the community to further stimulate researcher engagement with research data. Following the community’s popular demand and co-chairs interest and commitment to continue broadening its initial scope, the Charter for an Interest Group around research data management activities was submitted. The group received positive feedback from RDA which was discussed in their P15 BoF session. The group was officially established in late March 2020.

Short Group Status: 

This will be the first plenary session as a formally established RDA Interest Group. The session will provide the opportunity for the group to engage with new members, co-design activities, and draft an action plan for starting work on deliverables in the upcoming months.

Type of Meeting: 
Informative meeting
Avoid conflict with the following group (1): 
Avoid conflict with the following group (2): 
Meeting presenters: 
Group co-chairs and lightning talks from group members