ICPSR hosting events for #EndangeredData Week (February 26–March 2, 2018)


Endangered Data Week logo


Endangered Data Week is raising awareness of threats to publicly available data; exploring the power dynamics of data creation, sharing, and retention; and teaching ways to make endangered data more accessible and secure. ICPSR has several things planned throughout the week of Feb. 26-March 2, 2018.

ICPSR's Piper Simmons shares a story about a data-rescue-in-progress


Newberry Library, Chicago, Illinois, circa early 1990s.  A set of boxed materials stands alone in a corner. Their relevance is being questioned, and their time is running out.

Did a crunch for physical space land them in this precarious position? Possibly. After all they’d been around the library for a long time. Curators knew it was affiliated with a survey, as questionnaire forms were discovered among the contents, but its purpose for residing there had long faded from institutional memory. It was ultimately determined the materials were of no use to anybody, nor would they be a priority for the library’s collection. So, it was off to the dumps ... but wait! A last-minute decision to contact ICPSR brings us to today.

"Although these data were rescued, we’re not totally out of the woods yet. These data are literally in hard copy, and until they’re digitized with backups, they remain under some element of risk."

After a quick appraisal, ICPSR decided to bring all of the materials here for further evaluation. Those materials now constitute the Cornell Study of Occupational Retirement 1952-1958, one of the earliest longitudinal studies on retirement behavior. Although these data were rescued, we’re not totally out of the woods yet. These data are literally in hard copy, and until they’re digitized with backups, they remain under some element of risk.

What's the status of your data?

Data, in some form, stands alone in a library; a university; somebody’s closet, attic or garage. Was it left behind after a job transfer? Perhaps it’s located on media brought home upon retirement? What about that floppy disk unearthed during that last departmental move; those “forgotten” files residing on the server; or that stack of paper in a box? Colleagues may not know exactly what it is – or whether fits into their area of focus. But they are data, they are present, and their time is slowly running out.

Related video: Piper talks more about this data-rescue-in-progress


#EndangeredData webinar alert! 
DataLumos: A Tool for Improving the Future Accessibility of Valuable Government Data

ICPSR has established an open-access archive, DataLumos, where the public can archive valuable government data resources, ensuring their long-term availability. ICPSR, a center within the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research, has joined widespread efforts to preserve valuable US government data that may be hard to find or inaccessible in the future. On Tuesday, February 27, 2018 from approximately 1:00-1:30PM EST, ICPSR hosted a webinar as part of Endangered Data Week. This half-hour webinar discussed ways in which you can use this resource and steps you can take to improve data accessibility into the future. Viewers can expect to learn about this tool, how to use it, and how it can benefit their future work. DataLumos work is funded in part by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. For more information, please email datalumos@umich.edu. For more details, watch a recording of the webinar.




#EndangeredData event highlight: Downloading data and archiving with DataLumos

Who: Data users and interested members of the University of Michigan and surrounding community

What: Downloading data and archiving with DataLumos

Where: Room G150, Perry Building, 330 Packard St., Ann Arbor, Michigan

When: 1:00-4:00PM EST, Friday, March 2, 2018

For more information, visit the DataLumos event website. If you're sure you'll attend, please sign up via the RSVP form, so we can be sure to accommodate everyone (and have enough snacks alt).





Feb 22, 2018

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