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Lessons Learned: A Data Repository’s Experience Requiring Data Management Training
  • Rosalie Rossi,
  • James Gibeaut
Rosalie Rossi
Texas A&M University Corpus Christi

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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James Gibeaut
Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi
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The Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative Information and Data Cooperative (GRIIDC) is a data management system that provides researchers with a variety of tools to help manage data throughout the lifecycle of a project. GRIIDC was developed to fulfill the requirement that all Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) funded researchers make their data publicly available. After seven years of operation and over 1,900 datasets available for download, GRIIDC has encountered many challenges, including data organization issues, researchers’ varied experience with technology, and hesitance to share data. In 2016, GRIIDC began hosting training webinars to help researchers navigate the system, submit quality data and metadata, and provide data organization best practices. As the quality of data and metadata improved, GRIIDC determined that these webinars could mitigate previous issues. In 2017, the GoMRI data policy was updated requiring that each newly funded research consortium or individual investigator complete three training sessions within specific dates of their grant agreement. The training sessions included an introduction to the GoMRI data management program, organizing data – best practices and GRIIDC submission, and how to submit data to GRIIDC. The training sessions were offered by webinar and as workshops presented at the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill & Ecosystem Science conference. After hosting over 50 webinars, offering six workshops, and training 260 researchers, GRIIDC encountered a few issues with the required training including having to schedule individual webinars to accommodate researcher’s schedules, low attention rates, and diverse attitudes and experiences sharing data. Improvements were identified such as using software to track presentation views, making webinars more interactive, hosting additional in-person workshops, requiring a quiz at the end of the training, and allowing researchers the ability to test out of training. Even with the issues identified, GRIIDC is hopeful that the training will help researchers provide quality data submissions not only for the remaining GoMRI projects but for data they will generate in the future.