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What is Research Information Citizenship? Requests for Definitions and Examples

27th November 2017
By Simon Porter

In January 2018 (23rd to 24th), the persistent Identifier community will reconvene in Spain for Pidapalooza. Whilst spending two days talking about identifier infrastructure might not be for everyone, for me there are fewer things that are more important. Persistent identifiers create the structure for research to come to life online. As the coverage of persistent identifiers expands from the objects of research such as publications and data, to cover the agents and activities such as people, projects, grants, organizations and protocols, the aim is not simply to represent, but to create the information structures and pathways through which research actually happens.

What interests me the most, is that the challenges for the successful adoption of persistent identifier infrastructure in research are as much social as they are technical. Persistent identifiers come to life when they are used across multiple processes, systems and organizational boundaries. For this to happen, there must be shared understanding and norms surrounding how we handle and communicate the research information that has been identified.

Operating in a research environment empowered by persistent identifiers has responsibilities not only to the way we should consume research information, but also to the way that we create and communicate research information right through from researchers and institutions to research services providers, publishers and funders. This emergence of responsibilities surrounding how we handle and communicate persistent identifiers might be best described as Research Information Citizenship.

This year at Pidapalooza, I am looking forward to facilitating a conversation about what the social expectations and norms that underpin Research Information Citizenship actually are. To make this discussion as useful as possible I would like to begin the conversation now. Tell me via Twitter, what you think #ResInfoCitizenshipIs, and of course it would be hugely helpful if you could like and retweet those statements from others that resonate with you the most.


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