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The UK's largest collection of digital research data in the social sciences and humanities

Metadata and data discovery

We are experts in using and promoting metadata standards for describing collections and data in the social sciences, and we actively promote and guard standards.

We use both community and bespoke tools for workflow management, data processing activities, data acquisition and access - and we adhere to international standards for external and internal communications where possible.

We help to develop and maintain standards for the full range of data types we support, including:

  • Working to develop robust metadata standards for economic and social science data through the Data Documentation Initiative (DDI). Our staff currently sit on the DDI Technical Implementation Group and the DDI Metadata Office, and we are implementing DDI4 in our Data Service as a Platform work
  • Implementing metadata standards in key data discovery tools like Nesstar, OAI, ReShare and QualiBank
  • Developing a robust approach to data citation, launching DataCite Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) for all of our in-house data collection since 2012
  • Developing and maintaining key ontologies in the social science and publishing into SKOS (HASSET and ELSST)
  • Working with Cohort and Longitudinal Studies Enhancement Resources (CLOSER) to implement DDI3.2 into the CLOSER Discovery portal
  • Leading the development of an easy-to-use standard for complex qualitative data collections, through the use of QuDEx and TEI metadata standards
  • Actively supporting the Discovery Open Metadata Principles