As the DaMaRO Project’s Analyst and Training Officer, one of my first pieces of work on the project has been drafting a training and support plan – an outline of the work we’re intending to do in this area between now and the end of the project next March.
My first major task is to conduct a review of the research data management training materials that already exist. There have been a plethora of projects developing training resources in this area over the last few years – not least the five JISC-funded RDMTrain projects – and a lot of great material has appeared, much of which has been made available for re-use and adaptation. Mapping the current terrain will help us to identify any gaps, and then to plan how DaMaRO can best contribute to filling some of these. We also hope to do our bit to make these training resources better known, in Oxford and more widely – and perhaps to provide a central portal that allows researchers to see what’s available, and makes it easy to find what’s most relevant to them.
A second key issue is sustainability – in particular, the question of how we keep data management training and support going after the DaMaRO Project concludes next year. One way to move towards that is to raise the profile of data management among those who already have responsibility for training researchers – the University’s divisions and faculties, its doctoral training centres, and the academics who supervise graduate students and teach research methods courses. If we can get data management training firmly embedded in the University’s ongoing research-related activities, that will be a huge leap forward. So over the next few months, I’ll be working to establish and develop relationships with researchers and those who support them, to see how we can work together.
There are other elements to the training plan, too – such as producing training materials for some of the data management tools that are being developed as part of the project. More details about those will emerge as the project proceeds.