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Research Data Management

Metadata

One way that dataset documentation commonly appears is in structured descriptions of the dataset - this is known as metadata. Metadata is often defined literally as "data about data" and refers to the information used to describe the attributes of a resource in a standardised format. Metadata is often collected into one central location, so researchers can search in one place to find datasets that will help their research. 

Metadata for data typically includes information about the researchers involved with the data creation, a name or title of the data set, dates associated with the creation of the data, a brief description or abstract, and terms and conditions associated with the data set. 

Metadata Standards

Metadata standards may vary from discipline to discipline. At the minimum it should include (based on Citation Metadata in Dataverse; compliant with DDI Lite, DDI 2.5 Codebook, DataCite 3.1, and Dublin Core’s DCMI Metadata Terms):

  • Title
  • Author
  • Contact
  • Description
  • Subject
  • Keyword
  • Depositor
  • Deposit Date
  • Related Publication 
  • Grant Information (where applicable)
  • Kind of Data