The First E-archive of a University of Tartu Scientist was deposited in an electronic repository.

The UT digital archive Dspace published the personal archive of Hannes Tammet, Professor emeritus of the University of Tartu. Six collections hold more than a hundred electronic documents, all in all about 700 files, containing academic publications as well as teaching and research materials.

Creation of the personal archive was initiated by its owner who selected the materials and outlined the collections. This is the first personal digital archive which has been uploaded to an electronic repository; it differs much from a traditional personal archive of original documents on paper. Tammet’s e-archive is linked to different web environments, including the recently created UT repository of reserach data DataDOI, which allows assigning permanent DOI numbers or digital object identifiers to digital objects.

The UT institutional repository http://dspace.ut.ee/ and the research data repository http://datadoi.ee/ are standards-based open source platforms, offered by the university for the collecting, long-time preservation and publication of digital materials created by its members and their collaborators. The system of the DSpace repository is fairly flexible, making it possible to preserve all materials that need wider access and visibility.

Contact: Heiki Epner, UT Library, digital collections analyst
phone: 7375796
e-mail: heiki.epner@ut.ee


Natural Scientists at the University of Tartu Registered Nearly Half a Million Research Data Objects

The research data stored in the PlutoF cloud database was assigned with 486 912 DOI (Digital Object Identifier) numbers in the course of a few days. The registration of permanent identifiers is done by using the DataCite Eesti Consortium which helps to ensure that the high–quality scientific resources created by the network of member organisations can be easily identified and used.

According to Urmas Kõljalg, director of the UT Natural History Museum, the DOI system enables researchers to make their data more easily accessible and citable. The dataset with nearly half a million DOIs comes from a global information system for the DNA based fungal species and it enables to automatically identify species from any sample (incl. soil, water, plant diseases, medical samples etc.). The species data bases are developed by the UNITE international consortium which is led by researchers from the University of Tartu and they are stored in the PlutoF cloud which is developed by the Estonian research infrastructures roadmap NATARC.

The development of the module for publishing research data in the PlutoF platform began in 2014 as part of the DataCite Eesti project. Preparatory works for publishing nearly 487 435 UNITE species hypotheses were done at the beginning of 2015 and this included the creation of automatized solutions for compiling datasets, adding metadata and registering in the DataCite system. A special SH DOI view was created for a better visualisation of the dataset (e.g. https://plutof.ut.ee/#/datacite/10.15156/BIO/SH005435.07FU).

According to Allan Zirk, senior specialist in the Research Group for Biodiversity Informatics and Digital Archives, it took months to work out a complex solution and about a week to complete the final stage. The further activity level of indexation depends on the activity of the users who store ecological, phylogenetical and taxonomical data bases in the PlutoF cloud. Researchers can add their data to the PlutoF cloud in any format and request a DOI identifier. It is possible to register DOIs automatically for a data base or a selected section of it stored in the same system, this solutions saves time for researchers because data moves from the data base directly to the DOI system.

“As the citation and international recognition of research data is gaining momentum, the use of the DataCite system has become very important. Therefore, funders of research projects are paying more attention to how the datasets created in the course of research are published,” explained Kõljalg. The monograph which publishes research data with DOIs will be published in the near future in collaboration with the online publishing company Pensoft.

At the initiation of the UT Library and the UT Natural History Museum and with financing from the Estonian Research Council, the University of Tartu joined the international organisation DataCite in 2014 and acquired the right to assign unique DOI identifiers to research data from all over Estonia. Currently, the members of the DataCite Eesti Consortium are the University of Tartu, Tallinn University, Tallinn University of Technology, and the Estonian University of Life Sciences and other research organisations are welcome to apply. More information is available at the Data Cite Eesti website.

Additional information: Urmas Kõljalg, director of the University of Tartu Natural History Museum, phone 737 6235, urmas [dot] koljalg [ät] ut [dot] ee.


Estonian universities are hoping for financial support for research data management from the state

Roundtable Participants
Roundtable Participants: Ergo Nõmmiste, Marco Kirm, Katrin Niglas, Ülle Jaakma, Jüri Järs, Liisi Lembinen, Elena Sipria-Mironov, Tiiu Tarkpea and Sigrid Ots.
Vice Rectors for Research of the founding member universities of the DataCite Eesti Consortium met at a round table to discuss the issues related to the management and accessibility of research data. They agreed upon the DataCite Eesti activity plan for 2015 and came to the understanding that an effective cooperation model and state support are needed for maintaining the sustainable service of indexing the research data.

DataCite Eesti is a consortium formed by four Estonian universities – University of Tartu, Tallinn University, Tallinn University of Technology and Estonian University of Life Sciences. The membership fees ensure that the researchers of the member universities have the opportunity to register their research data with the unique DOI numbers. By today, the consortium has assigned, via the international DataCite organisation, more than 170 DOI identifiers to the University of Tartu researchers of chemistry, natural sciences and language technology.

During the already year-long project, financed by the Estonian Research Council, the UT Library and the UT Natural History Museum led the development of the DataCite Eesti web-based platform, the DataDOI repository, and the automated solutions of the PlotoF and SARV databases, all of which allow the applying for and registering of DOI numbers.

This year, DataCite Eesti consortium will continue to maintain the system and the service using only its membership fee-based budget. The UT Vice Rector for Research Marco Kirm said that serious problems may arise if some important Estonian academic research institutions would not be able to join the consortium because of financial reasons.

All participants of the round table agreed that state support would greatly contribute to the growth of the DataCite Eesti cooperation network, helping to make Estonian research data more visible to the world. Marco Kirm said that among the interested parties, wishing to join is the Estonian Academy of Sciences whose moral support and participation in the DataCite Eesti activities would be of essential importance.

The board of the consortium discussed the problem of research data preservation. In Estonia, there are large amounts of research data that have never been digitised and their preservation and accessibility have never been actively worked upon. For example, in the field of environmental physics, a bulk of measurement data, acquired in the course of twenty years, needs to be organised, described, provided with metadata and stored.

Other fields of science and data-collecting institutions are facing the same problem. The acting director of the UT Library Liisi Lembinen said that the research libraries of today are able to give researchers every help in their data management starting with metadata, standards and licences up to drawing data management plans and offering all kinds of information and training.

The UT Library has already for five years actively worked in introducing Open Access. At present, it is the only research library in Estonia that offers research data management-related services.

Information about applying for and registering DOIs, about DataCite and the DataCite Estonia Consortium can be found at datacite.ee.

Additional information: Marco Kirm, UT Vice Rector for Research, phone: 7375611 e-mail: marco.kirm@ut.ee

Estonian universities improved the sharing and accessibility of research data

Datacite logo The University of Tartu, Tallinn Technical University, Estonian University of Life Sciences and Tallinn University formed the DataCite Eesti Consortium with the aim of improving the accessibility of Estonian research data and making it easier for international community to use them, ensuring extensive finding and using of quality research resources created by its member research institutions.

University of Tartu joined DataCite in 2014, thus becoming the only organisation in Estonia that has the right to assign the unique DOI numbers (Digital Object Identifier) to research data. By the end of 2014, the UT Library, in cooperation with the UT Natural History Museum, developed the DataCite Eesti platform which enables assigning DOI numbers to all kinds of research data units and collections all over Estonia. Research data equipped with DOI numbers can easily be found and linked with other data, forming large data networks.

The University of Tartu Vice Rector for Research, Marco Kirm, said, “By letting the research institutions add DOIs to their research data, the DataCite Eesti Consortium contributes to making Estonian research data visible and accessible to international users.”

All institutions or single persons can join the Consortium, provided that their application is approved by the Consortium Board. The members have the right to use all services related to the administration of data centres and interfacing, offered by the Consortium, including the registration of DOIs, storing of research data metadata, using of metadata search engine, etc.

DataCite is a global network of libraries, data centres and other research organisations that works to increase the recognition of data as legitimate, citable contributions to the scholarly record. DataCite contributes to the emerging research data infrastructure by providing Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) for datasets and other non-traditional research outputs. DOI assignment helps to make data persistently identifiable and citable. In addition, DataCite promotes standards for data citation and description, and through its network of member organisations, creates an international community of users which helps to establish best-practices for the citation and management of research data.

More than thirty research institutions all over the world have already joined the DataCite initiative; by today, more than three million data items have been registered.

University of Tartu Library helped to assign the first hundred DOI numbers to Estonian research data

QSARDB In the framework of the DataCite Estonia project, the first hundred unique DOI (Digital Object Identifier) numbers were assigned to the research data in the databank of QSAR models (QsarDB) created at the Institute of Chemistry of the University of Tartu.

Quantitative structure–activity relationships (QSAR) are important tools for describing and assessing the properties of chemical compounds in chemistry and related fields (biochemistry, biotechnology, environmental risk assessment, etc.)

The databank of QSAR models (QsarDB) created at the UT Institute of Chemistry is an open web environment for uploading the researched relationships, mathematically presented according to the established standards, which have already been published in research papers. “We have already applied the so-called uniform source characteristics for several years. The addition of the DOI code as a more widely used technology gives us a better opportunity to cite the models archived in the databank; it makes the related research articles interactive and traceable and the raw research data accessible in an easy-to-use format. We, the creators of the QsarDB, are happy that the first DOI numbers assigned in Estonia were given to our work,” said the Senior Research Fellow of the UT Institute of Chemistry Uko Maran.

The University of Tartu joined the DataCite organisation this year, becoming the only organisation in Estonia with the right to assign the unique DOI numbers to single objects and data collections. The DataCite Estonia project will develop a web-based platform for the registration of research data and establish a consortium that can be joined by all Estonian universities and research and development institutions. The DataCite Estonia project, jointly coordinated by the UT Library and the UT Natural History Museum, is unique in Estonia and also in Eastern Europe. It will significantly contribute to making the Estonian research data visible and accessible to the international scientific community.

A seminar discussing the problems of open data will be held at the Conference Hall of the University of Tartu Library on 23 October at 13.00. The aim of the seminar is to give an overview of new trends in open research data publication and to introduce the DataCite Estonia project. UT researchers, experts and science policy makers, as well as renowned specialists in the field from the UK, Germany and Canada, will give presentations and participate in the panel discussion.

Information and registration: http://www.utlib.ee/openaccess/eng.
Preparations for and the creation of the DataCite Estonia platform were financed according to the agreement on the use of state budget support no 1.4-6/14/2 between the Estonian Research Council and the University of Tartu.

Additional information:
Uko Maran, Senior Research Fellow of the UT Institute of Chemistry, phone: 737 5254, e-mail: uko.maran@ut.ee; Elena Sipria-Mironov, UT Library Project Manager, phone: 7375750, e-mail: elena.sipria-mironov@ut.ee.

Get the latest news from DataCite here.

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