Our definitions

These terms are used throughout this section of the site.

Research data
That which is collected, observed, or created in a digital form, for purposes of analysing to produce original research results.
Dataset
A set of files containing both research data - usually numeric or encoded - and documentation sufficient to make the data re-usable.
Documentation
Any digital files such as a codebook, technical or methodology report or user guide, which explain the research data’s production, provenance, processing or interpretation.
Metadata
Information about a data item in the repository, including descriptive metadata such as title and other fields used in a citation, and administrative metadata such as date of submission. Usually conforms to a standard to allow computer-to-computer interoperability.
Research output
A term used to cover all research publications, and artefacts such as presentations, and not normally used to include research data.
Digital repository
Differs from other digital collections in that: "content is deposited in a repository, whether by the content creator, owner or third party; the repository architecture manages content as well as metadata; the repository offers a minimum set of basic services e.g. put, get, search, access control; the repository must be sustainable and trusted, well-supported and well-managed." (Digital Repositories Review, Heery and Anderson, 2005)
Edinburgh DataShare
The name for a digital repository hosted at the University of Edinburgh that stores datasets and metadata about them on the internet. A service for University of Edinburgh researchers to store their completed research data for access by others.
Open Access
Access to material via the Internet in such a way that the material is free for all users to read and use. (Wikipedia)
DSpace
The name of the software platform used for the data repository service (and the Library's Publications Repository Service).
Community
A DSpace term used to group collections in a repository. Can be a school or other unit of the University.
Collection
A group of datasets, or items. Can be named after the research unit responsible for creating the data or given its own name.

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