In the spotlight - New processing documents
Article dated: 22 May 2009
The UK Data Archive Data Services Section undertakes ingest processing of all incoming ESDS data,
apart from the ESDS International macro databases, which are processed by the ESDS International team
at Manchester. The UK Data Archive is currently updating its internal workflow systems and introducing a new records
management strategy, aimed at improving consistency within procedural documentation throughout the organisation.
As part of this framework, the Data Services team has recently produced a new set of procedural documents.
Five of the new documents update two previous guides, published in 2007, and cover various aspects of ingest
processing work, including processing standards, quantitative and qualitative data processing and documentation processing. Also
included is a 'quick reference' guide, which provides an overview of dataset ingest work from completion of the
acquisition process to archival preservation and release of the dissemination version (i.e. from 'start' to 'finish').
The ingest processing techniques outlined in the five documents have been developed and refined over time and aim
to combine the production of robust data preservation and dissemination formats with the flexibility required to deal
with the full range of materials archived by the UK Data Archive.
The sixth document in the set is a guide to the catalogue record quality control procedures in operation at the UK Data Archive.
Each dataset included in the ESDS and UK Data Archive collections has its own record in the Data Catalogue, created as part of
ingest processing. This document outlines how each catalogue record is checked prior to dataset release, and additional
checks undertaken by the ESDS services. These quality control measures ensure that information in catalogue records is
clear and accurate, and this in turn improves the quality and retrieval of results within Data Catalogue searches.
While the procedures described in these
documents are those in use at the UK Data Archive and therefore may not be widely applicable outside, it is hoped that they have
interest and relevance for the external reader, both within the research and data archiving communities and beyond.
Feedback is welcome, and further information may be obtained from the Data Services Section on application to the
UK Data Archive Qualitative Dataset Processing Procedures
UK Data Archive Data Processing Standards
UK Data Archive Data Processing Quick Reference Guide
UK Data Archive Quantitative Data Processing Procedures
UK Data Archive Documentation Processing Procedures
UK Data Archive Catalogue Quality Control Procedures