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Data Management for the Humanities

Data Curation Profiles Toolkit


Data Curation Profiles are designed to capture requirements for specific data generated by researchers as articulated by the researchers themselves. They are also intended to enable librarians and others to make informed decisions in working with data of this form, from this research area or sub-discipline. Data Curation Profiles employ a standardized set of fields to enable comparison. They are also designed to be flexible enough for use in any domain or discipline.


A profile is based on the scientist/scholar’s reported needs and preferences for these data. They are derived from several sources of information, including interviews, documentation, publications or other relevant materials.


The scope of individual profiles will vary, based on the author’s and participating researcher’s background, experiences, and knowledge, as well as the materials available for analysis.

What can a Data Curation Profile be used for?

At an individual level, the Data Curation Profile:

  • provides a structure for conducting a data interview between an information professional and a researcher or research group
  • provides a means for a researcher or a research group to thoughtfully consider their needs for the data beyond its immediate use

At an institutional level, the Data Curation Profile:

  • can serve as a foundational document to guide the management and/or curation of a particular data set
  • can be shared with staff providing data services and others to inform them of the researcher's needs and ensure that everyone is on the same page
  • may be used to inform the development of data services to be offered by the institution, as well as to help identify the types of tools, infrastructure and responsibilities for data services staff

At the broadest level, the Data Curation Profile:

  • may be used by others as a guide in developing data services at their own institutions
  • may be used as objects of research to further a better understanding of data types that researchers want or need to share, curate or preserve as well as the needs of researchers in doing so

Data Curation Profiles Toolkit - Website