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By the end of 2016, researchers that do not have access to sufficient data storage capacity at their own research institute or knowledge centre can make use of the UvA/AUAS Library's new RDM storage system.

Photo: Janneke Staaks

In addition to secure storage, the system will allow for the publication and controlled sharing of data.

Archival, publication and collaboration

Mariëtte van Selm, Library information specialist, was involved in the tendering procedure. 'The Library is introducing the central RDM storage system in order to provide a basic resource that enables researchers to effortlessly comply with the central RDM guidelines. They can use the system to securely store their data and share it in a controlled manner, with specific colleagues. The system also allows for publication during and after the research project using a persistent identifier (unique coding), as well as archival.'

Management reports

'The system also helps data stewards to carry out their duties more effectively. They can apply management reporting to monitor usage and ensure compliance with the mandatory minimum ten-year data retention period.'

Researchers assess user-friendliness

'We prepared a schedule of requirements as part of the tendering procedure. We involved researchers in the process through a sounding board group, in order to ensure that the finished system accurately reflected the research practice, and in user-friendliness testing. We want an interface that is so intuitive users will not need a manual.'

Linkage with long-term data archives

'We'll be developing an RDM system that can be linked up to other systems, enabling researchers to work more efficiently. For instance, we'd like to ensure that data is automatically transferred to long-term archives such as DANS Easy or 3TU.Datacentrum once the ten-year retention period has expired. We will also be establishing a link-up with the successor to Metis, so that datasets can now also be registered as research results in addition to books and articles. Finally, we'll be working to develop an effective link-up with commonly used research environment software. This will eliminate the need to enter data twice.'


Use of the Library's RDM storage system will be subject to a fee. A payment system is currently being developed for this purpose. 'We want to help the various UvA and AUAS faculties implement the RDM guidelines cheaply and easily. In order to achieve this, we will strive to keep costs to a minimum. The system will meet all the relevant requirements for proper RDM, but will not offer any additional extras that could raise costs and would not necessarily be used by all faculties. Research institutes and knowledge centres can also simply use the Library's RDM storage system to archive and publish data.'