The United States Geological Survey Science Data Lifecycle Model

Download the document. See also this article in Journal of eScience Librarianship for a discussion of the model’s development.

U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) data represent corporate assets with potential value beyond any immediate research use, and therefore need to be accounted for and properly managed throughout their lifecycle. Recognizing these motives, a USGS team developed a Science Data Lifecycle Model (SDLM) as a high-level view of data—from conception through preservation and sharing—to illustrate how data management activities relate to project workflows, and to assist with understanding the expectations of proper data management. In applying the Model to research activities, USGS scientists can ensure that data products will be well-described, preserved, accessible, and fit for re-use. The Model also serves as a structure to help the USGS evaluate and improve policies and practices for managing scientific data, and to identify areas in which new tools and standards are needed.

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