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Active Storage: storing your data during a project
Where should you store your data?
There are a number of options to choose from when deciding where to keep your data during a project. Deciding which option is best for you may require some thought. It is recommended that your data be saved and stored using a minimum of two different options to prevent corruption and loss.
Below are options for storage available to UW affiliates:
Comparison of Data Storage Options
Comparison table of data storage options available to University of Washington affiliates.
UW IT Service Catalog
Catalog of information technology tools and resources available at the UW. Services are divided in categories such as Research Computing, Storage & Document Management, and Servers & Hosting.
SQLShare is a secure and easy way to manage, share, and manipulate your research data. Just upload your data through a browser, write queries in SQL, and share the results with anyone.
Google Drive lets you create, store, share and collaborate on documents, spreadsheets and presentations online. Google Drive is one of the core UW Google Apps. Google Drive is FERPA compliant, but not approved for HIPAA (PHI) data.
UW OneDrive for Business
Microsoft online service that provides resources for file storage, collaboration, and communication with other UW users.
U Drive is a central file storage for users that provides students, faculty and staff with a place to store files that can be accessed from anywhere, on- and off-campus.
Shared Central File System for Research Archives (lolo)
The lolo Archive is a file-based repository appropriate for data which you rarely access but for which you want to ensure long-term safekeeping and fast, convenient retrieval.
Sharing and Publishing Your Data
Why should you share your data?
There are a variety of reasons researchers should considering sharing their data at the end of a project. Sharing can:
- Accelerate research and provide greater exposure to data
- Increase possibility of future research collaborations
- Potentially increase citation of source papers (Piwowar, 2007)
- Increase return on research investment by allowing continued re-use of data (funding agencies value this)
- Many funding agencies (see SPARC list) and journals (e.g. Nature, Science) are now implementing data sharing requirements
- Encourage scientific enquiry and debate
Questions to consider before sharing your data:
- How much and which aspects of your data will you share? (Raw data? Analyzed? Both?)
- Are there privacy or security issues with your data and how will they be resolved? (Anonymization? Informed consent? Controlled access?)
- When will you make the data available? (As soon as it's collected? Upon project completion? After publication?)
- With whom will you share your data? (Your department? Your institution? Others in your field? Everyone?)
How can you share your data?
- Deposit in a subject-specific or institutional repository (see below for options)
- Submit as supplementary information with an article to be published in a journal
- Make available on a website
- Make available on departmental servers
- Informal peer-to-peer sharing via email or removable media
- Use an ORCiD ID to create a profile of all your publications including datasets.
- Create a persistent identifier for a long-lasting reference
Why should you preserve your data?
Choosing a data repository:
There are three different types of data repositories where you can deposit your data for sharing. Many disciplines have preferred discipline-specific repositories. If your discipline does not have a preferred repository, there are also general repositories that take data from all fields. The third option is to deposit your data into an institutional repository, such as the UW’s ResearchWorks. Below you will find links to resources to help you find the right repository for your data.
See the data storage options available to University of Washington affiliates under "Storing" on this page. Many of the services also provide options for easy sharing of data.