Meet your peers: meeting report Data Stewardship Network

Published on
December 3, 2018

Meet Your Peers, the first Data Stewardship meeting, was held on 8 November 2018. More than 50 WUR colleagues discussed the emerging role of the data steward, addressed challenges and exchanged experiences.

The meeting was organised by the Wageningen Data Competence Center (WDCC), together with Rikilt and WUR Library.

The role of 'Data steward' is emerging in many WUR research groups. This is in response to the dynamics and requirements around data. Data stewards are a group’s contact point on data subjects, assist in creating data management plans, know where to find data management tools, and know their way to the Data Management desk.

The first Data steward meeting on 8 November revealed the following issues. These will be addressed in the coming period:
•The role of the data steward needs to be described both to acknowledge and to define the steward’s  tasks
•Most data stewards are researchers. Finding time for data management is the most important challenge for these individuals. For this reason, the position of data steward needs to be clear and formalised within the university. However, research groups should have the freedom to organize the stewardship as they choose.  
•It should become clear//We need to clarify who is responsible for compliance with the research data management policy within WUR. What are the roles of data stewards, management and graduate schools in this?
•Data stewards need data management tools, such as templates for Data Management Plans customised for research groups of Wageningen Research, and short instructions to comply with WUR Data Management Policy.
•The new Data stewardship network is an appropriate platform to exchange information and knowledge. The network meetings will be organised twice a year.

The Data intranet group will be used as a communication channel. This intranet group will be the network’s central information point.

The Data desk of WDCC, located in the Forum Library, is the network's central physical point.

WUR Data experts gave workshops on the following topics:
-WUR Data Policy
-Data quality and FAIR data
-Data Management Plans
-Motivation and participation in Data Management
-Data storage and data archiving
-Personal data in research
-Training needs for data stewardship

The presentations from the first Meet Your Peers day can be found here.