Research Data Support

We can provide researchers with support and assistance when it comes to the documentation, storing, archiving and accessibility of your research data.

Contact us when you have questions regarding, for example, the following:

  • documentation of data during the research process
  • drawing up plans for data management
  • choice of storage place for research data
  • choice of file format
  • publication of research data
  • application of regulations that have to do with the management of research data

The research data support group at the University comprises colleagues from the Archives Department, the Library and IT. There is also a reference group in place.

Swedish National Data Service (Svensk Nationell Datatjänst) (SND)

The main purpose with the Swedish National Data Service is to support the accessibility, preservation, and re-use of data and related materials. It has a network of over 20 institutes of higher education, of which Dalarna University is one: see its website for more information.

Guidelines for Research Data

Document Data

Data Management Plan

A data management plan documents and describes how research material should be managed, organised, stored and made accessible throughout the research process. Well-structured data material also helps others to navigate through the material ahead of future research at the same time as it facilitates final archiving. The field of study determines the design of the documentation. This design can change as the project develops.

Metadata

Metadata is structured information to facilitate the locating, understanding, and reusing of research data. Metadata is also information that describes data. By using metadata, searching again for the information and interpreting it is made easier.

To ensure the correct interpretation and use of information, metadata standards have been designed with requirements that aim to create a common understanding of, for example, the data's semantic meaning.

Online Course in Management of Digital Research Data

Produced by the University of Edinburgh, MANTRA is a free online course, useful if you manage digital data as part of your research project.

Platforms for Data Submission

  • SND web form: SND helps make your data accessible. You can describe and submit your data and metadata using an e-form for long-term preservation. In such a way, research data and data descriptions can be stored in a secure manner so that they can be searched for and reused. The researcher retains the right to decide who has the right of access to the submitted research material.
  • Zenodo is the European service that allows you to upload and publish research data publicly.

Scientific Publications

  • DIVA - Dalarna University's publication database
  • Open Access - Open access to scientific results
  • Policy and Decisions - Dalarna University's policy for publication, archiving, and Open Access (currently in Swedish only)

Storage of Data

Long-Term, Secure Storage of Data

Your choice of storage will determine how secure your data is (unauthorised access, loss, etc.). Secure storage also assures the quality of your data for future use, publication, and archiving.

Consider the following:

  • How sensitive is the information?
  • What are the risks?
  • What are the technical advantages?
  • What is the cost?
  • Will the data be transferred to another country?

Select Your Storage Place

Level 1: Low Risk

Data can be spread to anyone/is lost without negative consequences. Contains no confidential or personal data.

  • Data should be stored in a central storage system (server), locally on a computer or in portable media or cloud.
  • When transferred over the Internet, for example by email, no encryption is normally required.

Level 2: Medium Risk

Certain negative consequences if data is spread to just anyone/is lost, but the data does not contain confidential or sensitive personal data. It can, however, contain other personal data.

  • Data should be stored in a central storage system (server) or regularly transferred there. Data can also be stored in a cloud service that the University has a contract with. There should be adequate protective measures in place if data is to be temporarily stored on a computer or in, for example, a Smart telephone, tablet, external hard disc or usb.
  • Upon transfer via the Internet - for example, by email - no encryption is normally needed.

Level 3: High Risk

Data contains confidential and/or sensitive personal data. There would be negative consequences if it were spread to anyone or lost.

  • Data should be stored in a central storage system (server). Information should not be stored locally on a computer or on a portable unit longer than on a temporary basis and then with security measures. It cannot be stored on a cloud.
  • Upon transfer via the Internet - for example, by email - encryption is required.

Assistance with Storage

Contact the IT department for assistance: forskningsdata@du.se. We can help you with adapted storage for which you determine exactly who can access it.

Researchers can use a questionnaire function developed by Sunet: contact nglc@du.se.

Storage Locations at Dalarna University

The University has these storage locations:

Type of Storage Name/Location Management of Storage
Central Storage System H: or L: on the server Backup copy made every day by IT
Locally on Computer C: on the hard drive No automatic backup copy
Portable Units Computer, mobile, tablet, memory card, external hard drive, usb, etc No automatic backup copy
Cloud Services Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, iCloud, Box, Evernote, etc. The University does not currently have a contract with a cloud service, which is why storage cannot be guaranteed.
IT System Systems that are currently useful for research purposes Diariet - for adminstrative documentation
DiVA - for publications

Security Measures

Examples of security measures for the protection of data:

  • physical security, such as lock, locker, and authority to access premises
  • authorisation control to digital storage places
  • password protected and encrypted storage places
  • codes or encryption of data, where key kept separately
  • logs on how data processed
  • backup
  • protection against destructive programs
  • encrypted transferral of data
  • policies and practices

File Format

Swedish National Data Service provides information about file format (in Swedish)

Archiving of Research Data

Why archive research data?

Research data needs to be archived

  • so that it can be reused in new research
  • so that it can be checked: for example, upon review or upon suspected research misconduct
  • so that the researcher him/herself and the institute of higher education where the research is being conducted can have safe long-term access to information.
  • because this is required by law

The results of research conducted by employees at an institute such as a university are allmän. This applies to research data as well. Public documents can then be either offentlig or confidential.

See Legal Requirements below.

How should research data be archived?

Archive your data by submitting to the archives: before you do this, contact arkiv@du.se.

Digital documents can, to a certain extent, be archived at the University: for example, recordings.

Notice that publication of data in or deposit of data into a national or international data archive cannot replace archiving at the University.

Which research data needs to be archived?

Primary material/basic data as a rule needs to be preserved but can be deleted in certain cases but not until ten years have elapsed.

Processed research data (bearbetad forskningsdata) is regarded in many cases to be working material and a step in the work process. It can therefore be deleted on an ongoing basis. Note, however, that this material must also be preserved if it is required to understand the context or to provide factual details, or if it is required for the results to be understood.

For example:

  • Paricularly comprehensive primary material that is unique and that would require a lot of work to reproduce
  • registers and databases for data with a particuarly high level of comprehensiveness and verifiability
  • documents that highlight the historical development of an academic discipline
  • documents that highlight the academic environment in a manner that his culturally historical
  • documents that highlight a prominent person
  • research that has received great attention in public debate or that can be expected to do so when the research results are spread further

More Information About Archiving and Storage

The information linked to here is currently available in Swedish only.

Legal Requirements

Regulations

The management of research data is regulated by, for example, various acts and laws on ethics vetting, GDPR, copyright, public accessibility and confidentiality, and archiving.

Read more about the legalities that regulate the management of research data:

What can a researcher promise research participants?

The regulations in place for the management of research data means that there are certain things a researcher cannot promise those individuals who take part in the research. For example, a researcher cannot promise that only the researcher and the research group will use the gathered material. There are times when access may be required.

You can read more about this on Vetenskapsrådets God forskningssed, page 40.

Legal Questions

Put your questions that are legal in nature to forskningsdata@du.se. Any questions we cannot answer, we will forward to a legal expert. You can also contact an SND lawyer.

Contact

With questions, contact forskningsdata@du.se.

Hanna Rudolph, Archives/Registrar

Ellinor Säfström, Archives

Kristina Lönn, Librarian

Ulrika Gabrielsson,Librarian

Anders Forsman, Data Protection Officer

Christer Solefält, System Technician

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