Published July 10, 2024 | Version v1
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Roadmap for Planning National RDM Expert Education - Finland's Approach

  • 1. ROR icon Aalto University
  • 2. ROR icon University of Eastern Finland
  • 3. ROR icon Tampere University
  • 4. ROR icon University of Helsinki


In light of the advancing open science landscape, the significance of research data and effective data management has become increasingly pronounced. Adhering to FAIR principles, researchers are encouraged to share their metadata and research data, fostering efficiency and reducing overall time, effort, and costs within the research community. Competence in good research data management (RDM) is now an essential skill for researchers.

The question arises: How do researchers acquire RDM skills? This is where the support of research data management personnel, known as data stewards, data librarians, or data curators, becomes crucial. Currently, training for these support roles primarily takes place on the job and through self-study, alongside their primary responsibilities within, for example, higher education, research infrastructures, or libraries. While lectures or webinars on RDM topics are better than nothing, they do not provide a comprehensive and systematic approach to building RDM competences. Additionally, the vague and unfamiliar nature of RDM professional tasks makes it challenging to plan a career in this field.

To address these shortcomings, the Professionalizing of RDM Experts Working Group, functioning under the Finnish National Coordination for Open Science and Research, devoted two years (2022-2024) to outlining a roadmap for planning an RDM education program tailored to Finland.

This presentation details the roadmap for developing Finnish RDM expert education, covering various steps such as building awareness of the need for RDM education, outlining the main content of the education, and determining the organizer of the education. The final two steps of the roadmap—identifying a sustainable business model for the educational offering and establishing trust and appreciation for the education—will be primarily managed by the organizer, Tampere University. The presentation emphasizes the importance of ongoing dialogue with stakeholders and international collaboration, following the successful model set by the University of Vienna’s Data Steward training.

Furthermore, the presentation delves into how the working group operated, its key participants, and the time invested in the project. Our aim is to provide an example for other countries interested in establishing a systematic training program comprising a modular curriculum tailored to the needs of diverse sectors, including research organizations, public administration, and companies.


Session 11_AnneSunikka_LIBER 2024_pdf.pdf

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