Making it Better: A Project Management Framework for Creating a Research Data Services Program
When librarians at Oklahoma State University (OSU) began creating services to support data intensive research they found plenty of published guidance about doing surveys and outreach to get started. However, they also found that offering the prescribed workshops and consultations didn’t assure that researchers would use them. A Sparks! grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) allowed OSU to try two novel techniques, customer journey mapping and design thinking, to engage researchers and answer the question “What is the role and impact of the library in helping researchers manage their data along the entire project lifecycle?” One of the outcomes of the project was creation of a toolkit that provides a step-by-step project management plan to guide libraries, especially those with limited resources, to prioritize needs and create offerings with the assistance of their user communities. This column intends to discuss this project management framework, with an emphasis on how it was implemented to meet the goals of the IMLS project.
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