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Depositing data in the Oxford Research Archive (ORA): Benefits of deposit

Purpose of this guide

Use this page to discover the benefits of depositing data in ORA (including Digital Object Identifiers) and the value of data curation.

Benefits of depositing data in ORA

Research data are a hugely valuable resource. By depositing your data in ORA, you can:

  • ensure the long-term preservation of your research
  • make your datasets easily discoverable and citable online
  • maximise the visibility and impact of your research
  • view usage statistics to see when your data has been downloaded
  • manage and link your publications and data from a single location
  • meet funding body requirements to preserve and share data
  • comply with Oxford University policy on research data management
  • help facilitate new and further research and debate

Key benefits of depositing data in ORA

  1. A permanent descriptive record is created for all data deposited in ORA and a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) can be requested, allowing the dataset to be clearly attributed and cited both by yourself and by others.
  2. Your data will be discoverable through Google and other search engines, maximising the visibility and impact of your research, and you can view usage statistics in the online data record to see how often your data has been downloaded. You can also choose to set an embargo period.
  3. Curation and online delivery of your data will be assured by ORA staff, so you can ensure the long-term preservation, back-up and accessibility of your data without having to maintain your own website.

Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs)

What is a DOI?

A DOI is a persistent, unique identifier for digital objects that allows items to be easily cited. Many UK funding bodies (e.g. the EPSRC) recommend that you use a DOI to cite your supporting data in publications.

The DOI system is managed by the International DOI Foundation. Permission for an institution such as Oxford to assign and 'mint' a DOI has to be approved by a DOI Registration Agency (in the UK this is the British Library, acting on behalf of the DataCite organisation). The Bodleian Libraries are permitted to assign DOIs to research data created at the University of Oxford.

For Oxford DOIs:

  • all DOIs will link to the dataset's permanent descriptive record page in ORA
  • embargoed datasets can be given a DOI as long as the item's descriptive record is made openly available

How do I get a DOI?

DOIs will be reserved for datasets deposited in ORA when requested as part of the online submission process — the DOI will then be activated (or 'minted') once the deposit has been reviewed by ORA staff and published in ORA.

The value of data curation

ORA staff review each data package submitted to ORA before publishing the collection online.

We check, as far as possible, that:

  • files are virus free and can be opened
  • copyright status and permissions appear to be correct, e.g. for research which has used third party data
  • access conditions (i.e. embargos) and any licence chosen for the data should be in line with any confidentiality concerns
  • data files (and file names) do not disclose identifiable information about participants in/subjects of the research, such as people's names and addresses, unless accompanied by the appropriate consent forms (which should not preclude data sharing)
  • sufficient data documentation and descriptive metadata is included for others to be able to understand the dataset
  • any URL links cited are not broken
  • any related publications are properly linked to the dataset

We do not attempt to evaluate the quality or validity of the research data itself.

If we have any concerns, questions or requests for further information, we will get in touch with you to discuss your deposit.