Utah State University Library Partners with Office of Research

At Utah State University Betty Rozum, Data Services Coordinator, works with the Office of Research and Graduate Studies (RGS), additional librarians, and other campus stakeholders to manage faculty data education and outreach.

Utah State’s data outreach started with a foundation of conversations between the library, RGS, and central campus IT. The earliest conversations addressed storage concerns, but soon grew in size and scope when the library realized that campus researchers should be included in conversations about their work. Since 2013 USU’s growing data efforts have lead to the creation of Betty’s position, a Data Task Force, and a Day of Data that included forums with representatives from neighboring institutions.

Betty has been instrumental in continuing and advancing the conversation, building a mutually beneficial relationship with other groups on campus to support larger institutional goals around data. One especially productive partnership has been with the Division of Sponsored Programs. Sponsored Programs has their own system to track Utah State grants. When a PI is awarded funding from an agency that requires a data management plan, Sponsored Programs sends the Data Management Plan and information about the award to the library to set up a record to represent the award in Digital commons. Faculty are asked to annually update information about data and publications produced pertaining to their grant.  This information is captured in Digital Commons, either by cataloging the datasets that are deposited or by creating metadata records for datasets deposited elsewhere. This mediated process ensures that faculty comply with grant requirements without adding too much to their existing workflows, and means that the library is able to share up-to-date information about USU faculty research.

Betty and Becky Thoms, Head of Digital Initiatives, shared about their evolving workflows in a webinar last year—information that has since been updated and shared in a conference paper that Betty co-authored with others involved in the project. For additional examples of repositories managing data needs, see our recent webinar Data Decoded: Easy Ways to Support Campus Data Needs.