The CESSDA Widening meeting, held in Milan earlier this June, aimed to introduce the expanding services and support offered by CESSDA to aspiring members. The focus of the second day was to provide insight into the benefits of membership.
Addressing core topics of interest to data professionals, CESSDA Working Groups play an important role within the consortium. They demonstrate that a direct benefit of joining CESSDA is being able to join its expert communities.
Trust in digital repositories and services
The leader of CESSDA Trust Working Group, Hervé L’Hours from UK Data Service, stressed the importance of archives acquiring the CoreTrustSeal certification, and offered a meticulous and comprehensive presentation of its requirements.
"CoreTrustSeal is recognised as a valuable tool for driving internal evaluation, discussion and planning, even for archives not yet ready to apply for certification," stated Hervé L'Hours. The Trust Working Group can help service providers at different stages in the application process towards final attainment of the certification.
Training for data professionals
The consortium’s wide range of training activities were presented by Irena Vipavc Brvar from ADP (Slovenia) and leader of CESSDA Training Working Group. CESSDA and its service providers offer various thematic webinars, workshops, summer schools, and guiding tools. These services are aimed at researchers as well as national data archive staff and data professionals.
"We already have the CESSDA Data Management Expert Guide which comprises 15 hours of self-training material with expert tips," stated Irena Vipavc Brvar. The importance of continuous training of data experts was also stressed. This refers especially to the collection of sensitive personal data for research purposes and associated legal standards and research ethics.
CESSDA Data Catalogue
The CESSDA Data Catalogue was exclusively previewed to meeting attendees. The catalogue is an essential factor in making the consortium’s data findable, complying with the FAIR principles.
CESSDA Data Catalogue automatically harvests metadata from CESSDA Service Providers. John Shepherdson from UK Data Service, leader of CESSDA Technical Working Group, presented the catalogue. “At the moment, we have around 14 000 records (from 5 out of 17 Service Providers) and we are currently working on including records from the other service providers". The catalogue is designed to be user-friendly though additional ‘How to' videos to help users are also in preparation.
The catalogue provides text search and filtering. It also offers users the possibility to keep the link to a data set for later use or to share it with colleagues.