Explore and work with data and primary sources

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Research Data Management

Research Data Management (RDM) is the management of data used or created as part of the research life cycle.

RDM aims to make the research process as efficient as possible. It helps meet expectations and requirements of the University, research funders, and legislation while also making research more accessible to the broader community.
It involves how you:

  • Create data and plan for its use
  • Organize, structure, and name data
  • Make it secure, provide access, store and back it up
  • Find information resources, and share with collaborators and more broadly, and publish and get cited

Our data librarians can help manage your data more efficiently and comply with funder and publisher requirements for data management and sharing. Learn more about our services in this area and how you can get started

River Campus Libraries Data Set Grant and Purchase Programs

There are two programs that can assist students, faculty members, and other Rochester researchers obtain the datasets they need for their research: a Data Set Grant fund and a Social Sciences/Humanities Data Purchase Program.

Use the following chart to determine which is the right one for you. 

Flowchart to help determine if you can get a grant or data purchase program


If you have any questions on this diagram, or our data set programs, please contact Kathy Wu.

For additional information on the criteria and processes for these funding opportunities, please look at the chart below. Undergraduate and graduate students can take advantage of either opportunity, while faculty members and other researchers are eligible only for the Data Purchase Program.



RCL Data Set Grant (additional information is available here) 

Social Sciences/Humanities Data Purchase Program



Undergraduates and graduate students from the River Campus who need data sets for their research projects.

Undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, and researchers affiliated with the River Campus in need of social sciences, business, or humanities data sets.


  • Eligible data sets:   
    • Data can be used by one user only
    • Data cannot be included in the library collections due to licensing agreement
    • The data requested is a set that cannot be put in our catalog
    • The grant program supports students to use the grant in data creation and collection
  • Students need to work with a librarian or a faculty to identify the data set.
  • An application needs to associate with a course or a research project
  • Presentation is required
  • Time/Date Limits to Apply:  Twice a year (Spring and Fall)
  • Subject librarian and faculty support (highly recommended)
  • Eligible data sets:
    • Any type of data can be purchased as part of this program, although it needs to be related to teaching, research, or some other University of Rochester activity. It cannot be purchased for personal interest. The RCL define data as being any type of raw material that can be used in research or in discovery. Some types of data include:

      • Quantitative or qualitative datasets
      • Text corpora, demo corpora, text collections, or linguistic corpora
      • Text with markup
      • Image files or PDF files of archival items, artworks, photographs, or maps
      • Geospatial data including raster and vector files
    • The data requested can be put in our catalog
  • Consult with subject librarians first. 

How to apply

Submit Application

Submit request

Review Process

Grant Review Board will review all applications:

  • Fall: September 15, 2023
  • Spring: February 2, 2024

Decision Notification:

  • Fall
  • Spring

Social Science/Humanities librarians review all applications on a rolling basis. Once the decisions are made, the applicants will be notified.

Please note that the turn around time is about one month.  So, the “date needed” cannot be within 30 days.


Data analysis & visualization

Data analysis is a process of inspecting, cleansing, transforming, and modeling data. The River Campus Libraries offers resources to support this work from finding data to visualizing it.

Finding Data

Looking for publicly available and open-access data sets? Here are some good places to get started.

  • Data.gov – government data at the local, state, and federal level
  • Re3data.org – collection of data repositories with theme or subject specialties
  • Dyrad – datasets related to published papers
  • Pew Research Center – datasets related to public opinion, polling, and demographic research focused on the U.S.
  • Figshare – data in support of open science shared by researchers
  • Open Science Framework – researcher profiles, which may include data, papers, methods, etc.

Not finding what you need? Your liaison librarian can help. We have access to a variety of discipline-specific datasets. You can also recommend a dataset for purchase or apply for our data grant.

Cleaning Data

Even when you find a good dataset, you may have to organize and clean it before you can begin your analysis. The library offers periodic workshops on tools, like OpenRefine, R, and Python that can help you easily clean your datasets. Check out the River Campus Libraries’ upcoming events to see what is being offered, and sign up.

Data Modeling and Visualization

The library also offers workshops that can help get you started with data visualization tools like Tableau. Check out the River Campus Libraries’ upcoming events to see what is being offered, and sign up.

We also have resources to help with data science and statistics. Visit our data science guide to learn more.

Data Citation

It is important to cite data that you use. Managing citations can be cumbersome if you leave it to the last minute. Visit Data and statistics: Data Citation for everything you might need.

You may also benefit from getting others to cite your data. By sharing your data in one of the resources below, you can increase the probability of your data being discovered and cited correctly.

  • DataCite: Identify online repositories of research data, get help obtaining persistent identifiers for datasets, workflows and standards for data publication, or link underlying data to your published articles.
  • figshare: A repository where users can make all of their research outputs available in a citable, shareable and discoverable manner.
  • Dryad: Find and archive data files associated with any published article in the sciences or medicine.
  • Open Researcher & Contributor iD (ORCID): Researchers can obtain a free, unique digital identifier to distinguish their research activities from others with similar names.

Sharing Data

Organizing for Sharing

Planning how you will organize your data in advance will make it easier to work with your data, share it, and preserve it. Librarians can offer advice regarding best practices for file-naming, persistent identifiers (such as DOIs), and version-controlling.

To learn more about metadata and standards for various disciplines, visit the Understanding Metadata page.

For examples about the type of support, go to Metadata Outreach – Project and Services.

Depositing Data

When you are ready to deposit your data, you have a few different options.

  • UR Research Repository (URRR) - This repository can be used for papers and data created by UR researchers (students, staff, or faculty). Each user is granted an initial 10GB of storage. Data submitted to URRR will undergo a brief data curation process to ensure it is as discoverable as possible. This repository should meet most funder and publisher requirements for data sharing. Reach out to our data team for more information.
  • Subject-specific repositories - These are a great option for sharing your data. The requirements and polices of these repositories can vary. Reach out to our data team for more guidance.

Archival Collections & Manuscripts

River Campus Libraries’ Archival Collections can be found in the Department of Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation (RBSCP). RBSCP holds the University’s unique, rare, and most important materials and collections, and they are home to the University Archives. Below are some useful links to help you get familiar with the RBSCP spaces:

Accessing Other University Collections

The University of Rochester also has great collections beyond the River Campus Libraries. Below are some useful links to access these collections.

Need an item Rochester doesn’t own? Interlibrary Loan connects our community to the nearly limitless resources of libraries across the globe. Follow these steps to request material.