Choice publishes white paper examining changes to research data services in academic libraries

Choice today announced the publication of the fifth in a series of white papers designed to provide actionable intelligence around topics of importance to the academic library community. This paper, “Research Data Services in Academic Libraries: Where are We Today?”, offers a unique opportunity to revisit and re-examine findings from a 2012 ACRL survey and white paper about RDS by reissuing the survey, appropriately updated, and writing about the changes to research data services that have occurred in academic libraries in the past seven years.

Researched and written by Carol Tenopir, Chancellor’s Professor at the School of Information Sciences at the University of Tennessee, and three other authors, the white paper evaluates the extent to which new technologies, new tools, and new perspectives on data management and access have altered the landscape during the past seven years. It seeks to answer such questions as: how have academic libraries positioned themselves in this changed environment? What progress has been made against the goals probed in the original survey? The work documents not only statistical changes in the services offered but also a more qualitative assessment of impediments to progress in RDS.

Commenting on the publication of the latest white paper, Choice editor and publisher Mark Cummings noted, “While the academic library is in many respects the ideal place to turn for the storage, management, and discovery of research data, provision of research data services has thus far not kept pace with demand. Based on a survey of some 186 academic libraries in North America, this paper reviews the various types of services currently being offered and explores both the gains and the impediments to the development of RDS over the past decade. Given the importance of the topic, we are particularly pleased to add this report to our growing library of research papers.”

“Research Data Services in Academic Libraries: Where are We Today?” has been published under a CC BY-NC 4.0 license and is available at

About the author:

As a publishing unit of the Association of College and Research Librarians, Choice supports the work and professional development of academic librarians by providing tools and services that help them become more effective advocates for their patrons. Through its over fifty-year history, it has established itself as an authoritative source for the evaluation of scholarly resources and as the publisher of trusted research in areas of interest to a changing academic library community.

Today, Choice works to bring librarians, scholars, publishers, and the reading public together, facilitating a shared concern for the discovery, management, and preservation of scholarly information. Please visit Choice at for more information.