Assessing Research Data Management Practices of Faculty at Carnegie Mellon University

Authors: Steve Van Tuyl , Gabrielle Michalek

Abstract: INTRODUCTION Recent changes to requirements for research data management by federal granting agencies and by other funding institutions have resulted in the emergence of institutional support for these requirements. At CMU, we sought to formalize assessment of research data management practices of researchers at the institution by launching a faculty survey and conducting a number of interviews with researchers. METHODS We submitted a survey on research data management practices to a sample of faculty including questions about data production, documentation, management, and sharing practices. The survey was coupled with in-depth interviews with a subset of faculty. We also make estimates of the amount of research data produced by faculty. RESULTS Survey and interview results suggest moderate level of awareness of the regulatory environment around research data management. Results also present a clear picture of the types and quantities of data being produced at CMU and how these differ among research domains. Researchers identified a number of services that they would find valuable including assistance with data management planning and backup/storage services. We attempt to estimate the amount of data produced and shared by researchers at CMU. DISCUSSION Results suggest that researchers may need and are amenable to assistance with research data management. Our estimates of the amount of data produced and shared have implications for decisions about data storage and preservation. CONCLUSION Our survey and interview results have offered significant guidance for building a suite of services for our institution.

Citation: Tuyl, S.V. & Michalek, G., (2015). Assessing Research Data Management Practices of Faculty at Carnegie Mellon University. Journal of Librarianship and Scholarly Communication. 3(3), p.eP1258. DOI:


Review this content