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The Backstage Work of Data Sharing

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Association for Computing Machinery


Conventional wisdom suggests that there are benefits to the creation of shared repositories of scientific data. Funding agencies require that the data from sponsored projects be shared publicly, but individual researchers often see little personal benefit to offset the work of creating easily sharable data. These conflicting forces have led to the emergence of a new role to support researchers: data managers. This paper identifies key differences between the socio-technical context of data managers and other human infrastructure" roles articulated previously in Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW) literature and summarizes the challenges that data managers face when accepting data for archival and reuse. While data managers' work is critical for advancing science and science policy, their work is often invisible and under-appreciated since it takes place behind the scenes."


Kervin, Karina; Cook, Robert B.; Michener, William K. (2014): The Backstage Work of Data Sharing. Proceedings of the 2014 ACM International Conference on Supporting Group Work. DOI: 10.1145/2660398.2660406. Association for Computing Machinery. pp. 152–156. Sanibel Island, Florida, USA