Short Course A: Preparing Data for Re-Use. A Practical Guide to Processing and Documenting Your Data for Sharing

Lecturers: Hannah Schwarz, Anja Perry, Sebastian Netscher, Alexander Jedinger

Date: August 3-4, 2017
Time: 09:00-13:00, 14:00-16:00

About the Instructors:

Dr. Sebastian Netscher joined the GESIS Producer Relations and Outreach Team in November 2014. He designs
and delivers data management workshops for CESSDA Training. Previously, he worked as a member of the secre-
tariat of the Comparative Study of Electoral Systems (CSES) at the GESIS Data Archive in Cologne. Sebastian
specializes in data harmonization and data management. His research interests are political science, investigating
individual political knowledge and differences in political systems.
Dr. Anja Perry joined the GESIS Data Archive in 2016 and works in data acquisition. From 2012 until 2016 she
worked for the German PIAAC research team at GESIS and was responsible for archiving and distributing the
German PIAAC data. Anja completed her PhD thesis “Decision Making in Innovation and Entrepreneurship” at the
Max Planck Institute of Economics and DFG Graduate College “The Economics of Innovative Change” at the Uni-
versity of Jena in 2010. After that she worked for the German Federal Statistical Office. Her research interests are
skill mismatch, entrepreneurs' skill use and low literacy.

Short Course Description:

Re-use of research data becomes increasingly important in social science research. Not only is replicability of
research data and research findings considered an integral part of good scientific practice. The European Com-
mission and more and more national research funders also require an active data management to ensure that
data is of high quality and can be re-used by researchers for new research purposes.

The re-usability of research data hinges on a number of factors, including the way the data is processed but also
how relevant legal aspects such as copyright and data protection are addressed. Researchers thus have to ensure
that no legal barriers to re-using the data exist and that re-use of the data is not hindered by messy, sloppily
documented data. Both - addressing legal issues and generating clean and well-documented research data - are
prerequisites of re-usability and sharing as this enables other researchers to legally re-use the data as well as to
understand it in the context of their own research purposes.

The workshop helps researchers to ensure that their research data is re-usable and can be safely made available
to others - both for the purpose of research replication and for re-use in new contexts. For this purpose, the
workshop focuses on legal issues of data collection and sharing, as well as on basic concepts of data cleaning and
data documentation.

Target Group:

Participants will find the course useful if they

  •  are social science researchers at an early stage of study planning or data collection, working with quantitative data (principal Investigators, researchers who are part of project teams, individual researchers and PhD students):
  • are faced with challenges related to data protection, data cleaning and documentation and have little experience in dealing with them so far;
  • aim to share their data for re-use after the end of the research project and/or want to learn how toensure reproducibility of their research findings.

Course and Learning Objectives:

By the end of the course participants will:

  •  have gained a basic understanding of research data management in social science research within the larger data lifecycle;
  •  be familiar with techniques of data cleaning and data documentation, as well as preparing their data for re-use
  •  be aware of legal challenges to data sharing resulting from data protection regulations and intellectual property rights
  •  be familiar with applying re-use licenses to their data.