Research data

Research data is data that is collected, observed, or created, for purposes of analysis to produce original research results. Research data can be generated for different purposes and through different processes, and can be divided into different categories - all requiring a different approach:

  • Observational: data captured in real-time, usually irreplaceable. For example, sensor data, survey data, sample data, neurological images
  • Experimental: data from lab equipment, often reproducible, but can be expensive.
  • Simulation: data generated from test models where model and metadata are more important than output data.
  • Derived or compiled: data is reproducible but expensive. For example, text and data mining, compiled database, 3D models.
  • Reference or canonical: a (static or organic) conglomeration or collection of smaller (peer-reviewed) datasets, most probably published and curated.

Source: Boston University Libraries