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Turku University Library

Research Data

Data Storage Solutions, Backup and Data Security

A computer’s hard drive or USB drives are not protected enough for data storage. The IT Services recommends that you always use a data storage service offered by the University as the IT Services takes care of sufficient data security and back-up files.

More information on the data storage solutions and services offered by the University are available on the intranet pages of the IT Services.

Advice and help with information security is available on the webpages of the IT Services.

Organising and Naming Files

During the research process, researchers produce large quantities of data. This creates challenges for maintaining order as well as for understanding the data. The process of organising and naming data should be planned and agreed to by the members of the research group at the beginning of the project. In particular, if there are several people saving data, it is vital to draft specific instructions so that the research project files are consistent.

Organising and naming the files consistently helps:

  • avoid mix-ups during the research process and when analysing the data.
  • share data within the research group.
  • ensure the preservation of data despite any changes in the composition of the research group. 
  • ensure the readability and understandability of data after the research process has ended.
  • find out what the data contains and by which principles it has been collected.

The University of Glasgow has good tips on organising and naming files on its research data webpages.

Why Document Data?

With good documentation, data is easier to

  • locate
  • reach
  • understand
  • assess
  • store for long-term use
  • reuse

Once data is organised and described with metadata, we are able to identify similar data, harvest and mine data more easily and keep track of versions and changes in our data. Without metadata data is often impossible to find and combine in order to create new knowledge. Therefore metadata is essential for open science to be meaningful.