Institutional Support

The Lakehead University RDM Advisory Committee identified the following goals and objectives to support strategy adoption and continued use of best practices in RDM among its researchers.

Goal 1:  Establish a formal RDM governance structure.

Establish a standing RDM Advisory Committee that would continue to report to the Vice-President Research and Innovation. The RDM Advisory Committee will have representation from: the Office of Research Services, Library, Research Ethics Board, Technology Services Centre, and researchers from diverse disciplines who will be responsible for developing an implementation plan to execute RDM strategies outlined in this document. 

  • Aligned with the principle of Indigenous self-determination, an Indigenous-led RDM Committee with knowledge of, and understanding of, Indigenous data sovereignty principles will lead the implementation of Lakehead University’s IRDM strategy.
  • Clarify roles and responsibilities for coordinated delivery of RDM support services.
  • Create a Lakehead University RDM Services Portal that is jointly supported and coordinated by the Office of Research Services, Library, and the Technology Services Centre that would provide a centralized hub for researchers to access RDM services.
  • Increase the REB’s capacity to review research data management plans within REB protocols for research, to ensure the ethical and secure storage of active data and long-term data in repositories.

Goal 2: Review and Develop Institutional RDM Policies and Processes.

  • Complete a thorough analysis of RDM related policies to ensure compliance with the Tri-Agency RDM policy, Indigenous data sovereignty principles, and applicable laws and regulations.
  • Review and recommend revisions to RDM related policies to ensure they represent current best practices and are compliant with applicable laws and regulations, including Indigenous data sovereignty principles, as set out in the RDM institutional strategy.
  • Develop the following new RDM guidelines, policies and procedures: Data Classification and Guidelines for Assessing Risk, Data Deposit Policy, Guidelines for Research Involving Indigenous Peoples; Guide for Graduate Research and Supervision; Data Retention and Destruction Policy; and Cybersecurity Best Practices for Working Remotely.
  • Work with the Research Ethics Board, affiliated institutions (Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute), the Northern Ontario School of Medicine University (NOSMU), and Indigenous communities and organizations with research protocols and ethics boards to ensure RDM policies/procedures are harmonized to reduce redundancy in workflows for researchers.

Goal 3:  Increase Awareness of RDM best practices among researchers.

  • Provide a resources webpage/portal which includes best practice guidelines and information related to topics such as data types, risk mitigation, archiving, open access, and appropriate data repository use.
  • Develop and provide resources and training to support awareness and implementation of Indigenous data sovereignty by Indigenous partners and communities.
  • Create RDM success stories via social media, video, blogs to bring relatable content to researchers to increase engagement including the types of data that could be archived/available through open access for use by other researchers.
  • Train RDM experienced researchers to act as mentors for new and emerging scholars.
  • Develop training to inform researchers about the Tri-Agencies National Security Guidelines for Research Partnerships and their obligations to undertake consistent, risk-targeted due diligence of potential risks to research security.
  • Host events annually during RDM Week in May.
  • Training and awareness raising as to specific ethical concerns in human data management and data storage, such as ongoing consent and the lifecycle of data.
  • Promote integrated and harmonized procedures for research-related protocols/documents (e.g., REB protocols, DMPs).
  • Training researchers to determine appropriate retention periods for various types of research data and physical materials, with guidance on selecting appropriate repositories and conditions of preservation for these materials.
  • Create best practices guidelines that include close guidance on topics of concern.

Goal 4:  Expand RDM Support and Training

  • Develop a training program for all researchers (students, staff, faculty), which offers sessions delivered in various formats on a variety of RDM-related topics.  Integrate RDM training into existing academic courses where appropriate.
  • Provide support services for researchers through cross-departmental collaboration between the Library, Office of Research Services, and Technology Services Centre.
  • Ensure that staff (Research Facilitators, Liaison Librarians, TSC) who are supporting RDM have access to appropriate professional development opportunities to support institutional excellence in RDM.
  • Training support for researchers and staff in best practices related to storage of sensitive data; Library (or specific Data Archive Committee) will develop materials in collaboration with the REB, TSC and the Office of Research Services.
  • Promote RDM excellence through the inclusion of stated RDM principles in relevant processes such as award and research grant selection and hiring. 

Goal 5:  Provide and support access to RDM tools, resources, and infrastructure.

  • Resources developed or implemented for RDM will be evaluated for sustainability, risk mitigation, and priority for support.
  • Develop resources to implement, process, monitor, support and test any existing or future tools, infrastructure, and the applications supporting research data.
  • Retain external data security expertise utilizing federal RSF Research Data Security grant to develop a Research Data Risk Assessment Framework with accompanying training for researchers, staff and the Research Ethics Board.
  • Expand Library RDM consultation and training services capacity. This may be implemented by increased training of existing staff in both Library and Research Office, and/or expanding existing human resources in the Library.
  • Continue to maintain and develop Lakehead Dataverse, Lakehead’s open access repository, infrastructure hosted by Borealis, the Canadian Dataverse Repository.
  • Evaluate additional data deposit repositories services available to researchers to ensure that they meet the needs of researchers; provide guidance as to their appropriateness for various projects. Factors including data curation, data security, and long-term preservation practices will be components of this evaluation. 
  • Renovate the University Archives and ensure it has adequate resources to manage transfers of physical materials (including print-based research data) from researchers and departments.
  • Develop infrastructure and commit resources to enable the full expression of Indigenous data sovereignty.