DIGITAL INFRASTRUCTURES for RESEARCH 2018 | Serving the user base

Establishing a generic Research Data Repository: The RADAR Service

Wednesday, September 28, 2016 - 14:00


Science and its data management are in transition. And while the research data environment has become heterogeneous and the data dynamic, funding agencies and policy makers push towards findable, accessible, interoperable and reuseable (= FAIR) research data. A popular issue of the management of data originating from (collaborating) research infrastructures is their dynamic nature in terms of growth, access rights and quality. On a global scale, systems for access and preservation are in place for the big data domains (e.g. environmental sciences, space, climate). However, the stewardship for disciplines of the so-called long tail of science remains uncertain. In the following, we show how an interdisciplinary infrastructure may facilitate research data archival and publication.
The presented RADAR - Research Data Repository - service strives to make a decisive contribution in the field of long tail research data: On one hand it enables clients to upload, edit, structure and describe (collaborative) data in an organizational workspace. In such a workspace, administrators and curators can manage access and editorial rights before the data enters the preservation and optional publication level. Data consumers on the other hand may search, access, download and get usage statistics on the data via the RADAR portal. For data consumers, findability of research data is of utmost importance. Therefore the metadata of published datasets can be harvested via a local RADAR API or the DataCite Metadata Store.
E-research projects often require comprehensive collaborative features. These include data storage, access rights management and version control. RADAR possesses a modular software architecture based on the e-research infrastructure eSciDoc Next Generation. The data storage is managed by a repository software consisting of two parts: A back end addresses general tasks such as storage access and bitstream preservation, whereas the front end implements RADAR-specific workflows. Front end workflows include various data services: Metadata management, access control, data ingest processes, as well as the licensing for reuse and publishing of research data with DOI. Archival Information Packages (AIP) and Dissemination Information Packages (DIP) are provided in a BagIt-structure in ZIP container format. 
The RADAR API enables users to integrate the archival backend into their own systems and processes. Another option is to install the RADAR software locally. The customer may choose to only deploy the management and User Interface layer, while archiving the data in the hosted RADAR service via the API, or to run everything locally. Additionally, there is the option to run the complete software stack locally and use the hosted RADAR service as a replica storage solution. 
The RADAR service starts in June 2016 and was developed as a cooperative project of five research institutes from the fields of natural and information sciences. The technical infrastructure for RADAR is provided by the FIZ Karlsruhe – Leibniz Institute for Information Infrastructure and the Steinbuch Centre for Computing (SCC), Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). The sustainable management and publication of research data with DOI-assignment is provided by the German National Library of Science and Technology (TIB). The Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich (LMU), Faculty for Chemistry and Pharmacy, and the Leibniz Institute of Plant Biochemistry (IPB) provide the scientific knowledge and specifications.


Target Audience:

Being the proverbial “transmission belt” between data producers and data consumers, RADAR specifically targets researchers, scientific institutions, libraries and publishers. In the data lifecycle, RADAR services are placed in the “Persistent Domain” of the conceptual data management model described in the “domains of responsibility”. These domains of responsibility are used to show duties and responsibilities of the actors involved in research data management. Simultaneously, the domains outline the contexts of shared knowledge about data and metadata information, with the goal of a broad reuse of preserved and published research data.


Benefits for Audience:

RADAR applies different preservation and access strategies for open vs. closed data:
•    For open datasets, RADAR provides a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) to enable researchers to clearly reference data. The service offers the publication service of research data together with format-independent data preservation for at least 25 years. Each published dataset can be enriched with discipline-specific metadata and an optional embargo period can be specified.
•    For closed datasets, RADAR offers format-independent data preservation between 5 and 15 years, which can also be prolonged. By default, preserved data are only available to the respective data curators, which may selectively grant other researches access to preserved data.
With these two services, RADAR aims to meet demands from a broad range of research disciplines: To provide a secure, citable data storage and citability for researchers which need to retain restricted access to data on one hand, and an e-infrastructure which allows for research data to be stored, found, managed, annotated, cited, curated and published in a digital platform available 24/7 on the other.


Topic 4: Working with data


Presenters Organisation URL
Angelina Kraft Technische Informationsbibliothek (TIB) German National Library of Science and Technology
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