Research Data Workshop Series 2019

Over the spring of 2019 the Research Data Service (RDS) is holding a series of workshops with the aim of gathering feedback and requirements from our researchers on a number of important Research Data topics.

Each workshop will consist of a small number of short presentations from researchers and research support staff who have experience of the topic. These will then be followed by guided discussions so that the RDS can gather your input on the tools we currently provide, the gaps in our services, and how you go about addressing the challenges and issues raised in the talks.
The workshops for 2019 are:

Electronic Notebooks 1
14th March at King’s Buildings (Fully Booked)

1200-1400, 10th April at 6301 JCMB, King’s Buildings, Map
Booking Link –
The DataVault was developed to offer UoE staff a long-term retention solution for research data collected by research projects that are at the completion stage. Each ‘Vault’ can contain multiple files associated with a research project that will be securely stored for an identified period, such as ten years. It is designed to fill in gaps left by existing research data services such as DataStore (active data storage platform) and DataShare (open access online data repository). The service enables you to comply with funder and University requirements to preserve research data for the long-term, and to confidently store your data for retrieval at a future date. This workshop is intended to gather the views of researchers and support staff in schools to explore the utility of the new service and discuss potential practicalities around its roll-out and long-term sustainability.

Sensitive Data Challenges and Solutions
1200-1430, 16th April in Seminar Room 2, Chancellors Building, Bioquarter, Map
Booking Link –
Researchers face a number of technical, ethical and legal challenges in creating, analysing and managing research data, including pressure to increase transparency and conduct research openly. But for those who have collected or are re-using sensitive or confidential data, these challenges can be particularly taxing. Tools and services can help to alleviate some of the problems of using sensitive data in research. But cloud-based tools are not necessarily trustworthy, and services are not necessarily geared for highly sensitive data. Those that are may not be very user-friendly or efficient for researchers, and often restrict the types of analysis that can be done. Researchers attending this workshop will have the opportunity to hear from experienced researchers on related topics.

Electronic Notebooks 2
1200-1430, 9th May at Training & Skills Room, ECCI, Central Area, Map
Booking Link –
Electronic Notebooks, both computational and lab-based, are gaining ground as productivity tools for researchers and their collaborators. Electronic notebooks can help facilitate reproducibility, longevity and controlled sharing of information. There are many different notebook options available, either commercially or free. Each application has different features and will have different advantages depending on researchers or lab’s requirements. Jupyter Notebook, RSpace, and Benchling are some of the platforms that are used at the University and all will be represented by researchers who use them on a daily basis.

Data, Software, Reproducibility and Open Research
Due to unforeseen circumstances this event has been postponed. We will update with the new event details as soon as they are confirmed.
In this workshop we will examine real-life use cases wherein datasets combine with software and/or notebooks to provide a richer, more reusable and long-lived record of Edinburgh’s research. We will also discuss user needs and wants, capturing requirements for future development of the University’s central research support infrastructure in line with (e.g.) the LERU Roadmap for Open Science, which the Library Research Support team has sought to map its existing and planned provision against, and domain-oriented Open Research strategies within the Colleges.

Kerry Miller
Research Data Support Officer
Library & University Collections


DwD2018 – Videos now on Media Hopper

Dealing with Data 2018 was once again a great success in November last year with over 100 university staff and Post-Graduate students joining us to hear presentations on topics as diverse as sharing data in clinical trials and embedding sound files in linguistics research papers.

As promised the videos of each presentation have now been made publicly available on Media Hopper (, while the PDFs can be found on You can also read Martin Donnelly’s reflections on the day

We hope that these will prove both useful and interesting to all of our colleagues who were unable to attend.

We look forward to seeing you at Dealing with Data 2019.


Research Data Management Training for University of Edinburgh staff and students, Spring 2019

Following on from our blog post on the benefits of RDM training which was posted on the 15th of November, we have scheduled our in-person training courses for the Spring 2019 semester. A description of each course and its intended audience can be found on our Training and support resources webpage, alongside details of online training offerings. Courses can usually be booked through MyEd Event Booking approximately four weeks beforehand.

Course Dates & Times Location
Creating a Data Management Plan 16/01/2019@10:30-12:30 Seminar Room 3, Chancellor’s Building (Little France) Map
28/02/2019@14:00-16:00 Murchison House, Room G.12 (Kings Buildings) Map
27/03/2019@14:00-16:00 Appleton Tower, Room 2.07 (Central Area) Map
Working with Personal and Sensitive Data 13/02/2019@14:00-16:00 Seminar Room 3, Chancellor’s Building (Little France) Map
21/03/2019@10:00-12:00 G.69 Joseph Black Building (Kings Buildings) Map
01/05/2019@14:00-16:00 High School Yards, Classroom 4 (Central Area) Map
Good Practice in Research Data Management 24/01/2019@13:30-16:30 Murchison House, Room G.12 (Kings Buildings) Map
22/02/2019@ TBC TBC
05/03/2019@13:30-16:30 EW11, Argyle House, 3 Lady Lawson Street (Central Area) Map
05/04/2019@09:30-12:30 Seminar Room 6, Chancellor’s Building (Little France) Map
Managing Your Research Data 17/01/2019@10:00-12:00 Room B.09, Institute for Academic Development, 1 Morgan Lane, (Holyrood) Map
05/02/2019@10:00-12:00 Lister Learning and Teaching Centre – Room 1.3 (Central Area) Map
15/03/2019@10:00-12:00 Seminar Room 5, Chancellor’s Building (Little France) Map
12/04/2019@10:00-12:00 Room B.09, Institute for Academic Development, 1 Morgan Lane, (Holyrood) Map
25/04/2019@14:00-16:00 G.69 Joseph Black Building (Kings Buildings) Map
18/06/2019@10:00-12:00 Room B.09, Institute for Academic Development, 1 Morgan Lane, (Holyrood) Map
Handling Data Using SPSS 12/02/2019@13:30-16:30 Room 1.08, First Floor, Main Library, George Square (Central Area) Map
02/04/2019@13:30-16:30 EW10, Argyle House, 3 Lady Lawson Street (Central Area) Map
Data cleaning with OpenRefine 07/02/2019@13:30-16:30 Lister Learning and Teaching Centre ,2.14 – Teaching Studio, (Central Area) Map

Kerry Miller
Research Data Support Officer
Research Data Service
Library and University Collections



New video: the benefits of RDM training

A big part of the role of the Research Data Service is to provide a mixture of online and (general/tailored) in-person training courses on Research Data Management (RDM) to all University research staff and students.

In this video, PhD student Lis talks about her experiences of accessing both our online training and attending some of our face-to-face courses. Lis emphasises how valuable both of these can be to new PhD candidates, who may well be applying RDM good practice for the first time in their career.

YouTube Preview Image

It is interesting to see Lis reflect on how these training opportunities made her think about how she handles data on a daily basis, bringing a realisation that much of her data was sensitive and therefore needed to be safeguarded in an appropriate manner.

Our range of regularly scheduled face-to-face training courses are run through both Digital Skills and the Institute of Academic Development – these are open to all research staff and students. In addition, we also create and provide bespoke training courses for schools and research groups based on their specific needs. Online training is delivered via MANTRA and the Research Data Management MOOC which we developed in collaboration with the University of North Carolina.

In the video Lis also discusses her experiences using some RDS tools and services, such as DataStore for storing and backing-up her research data to prevent data loss, and contacting our team for timely support in writing a Data Management Plan for her project.

If you would like to learn more about any of the things Lis mentions in her interview you should visit the RDS website, or to discuss bespoke training for your school or research centre / group please contact us via

Kerry Miller
Research Data Support Officer
Library and University Collections
The University of Edinburgh