On Thursday 21st of September, the PARTHENOS members working on common policies and implementation strategies gathered at the DANS office in The Hague. Hella Hollander, the team leader, presented the scope of the meeting, namely the setting of milestones for the further development of a deliverable entitled Guidelines for common policies implementation, which will focus on policies to increase the quality of data, metadata and repositories.

The team will be working on three specific sets of activities. First, over the next year and a half the deliverable will be concretized from concept to its final version. Secondly, the functionality and content of an online Wizard will be improved to open up the information on policies which have been collected beyond PARTHENOS. Finally, a Data Management Template and the concept of a Data Management Protocol will be further developed to help researchers and institutions to set up appropriate data management policies to secure curation and accessibility of research data.

Copia di IMG_20170921_174535640[6][12]On behalf of the PARTHENOS team working on user requirements, Sara di Giorgio expanded upon the outcome of the review of a first draft of the Guidelines for common policies implementation deliverable and presented the desired amendments by a selected pool of experts. Then, Francesca Morselli explained how these findings will be translated into the final version of the deliverable, which – in short – will need to be more concise and more practically applicable to specific needs of researchers. A fitting example of this envisioned improvement will be the PARTHENOS recommendations chapter, which will serve both as an integral part of the deliverable, as well as a stand-alone document which can be used by researchers to offer them guidance through the often difficult world of policies for data quality.

Before the lunch break Vicky Garnett who is involved in PARTHENOS’ Skills, Professional Development and Advancement Programme gave a presentation on how PARTHENOS’ work on common policies can feed into the development of training modules showing researchers how to increase the quality of their research data.

The afternoon provided the opportunity to delve into two key topics: The Data Management Protocol/ Data Management Template and the Wizard. During the two workshops a planning document with activities and a timeline was jointly written for both products with a keen eye for what its users will find useful additions. For the Data Management Template, the first draft of the document was re-examined in the light of feedback provided by the user requirement team as well as observations made during the DH Benelux conference in Utrecht in early July. An important enhancement, which will soon be implemented, is to make the document more modular, therefore allowing it to be easily adapted to different kind of users.


The three layers of Data Management: Basic, Protocol, Plan– Image by: Rahul Thorat

The second project, for which a dedicated working group was created, is the Wizard. This interactive guide will serve as a dissemination tool by opening up the knowledge on data quality policies gathered by PARTHENOS to the public. While there is still work to be done in calibrating the way in which the Wizard presents the data, the tool in itself was well received by the group – it was seen as a useful collection of relevant information that can be queried according to specific needs. With that in mind, Interactive guide was considered a better term to describe it than Wizard, as the latter presupposes a more directed user-experience along a set path.

During the last part of the day, the two groups came together and presented their renewed roadmaps to one another. After this chance to review each other’s work, the workshop was concluded. At the end of the workshop, there was a well-deserved opportunity to catch up as colleagues in a more informal setting, as unfortunately we don’t have the chance to meet very often. Over the next couple of months, the discussed ideas will be turned into concrete improvements. This goes for the project deliverables, including the Data Management Protocol/Data Management Template and the Wizard-Interactive Guide, which will truly allow the field to benefit from the work of PARTHENOS.

Frank Uiterwaal and Francesca Morselli