3 Association of Research Libraries Research Library Issues 296 2018 Why Does Research Data Management Need Radical Collaboration? Judy Ruttenberg, Program Director for Strategic Initiatives, Association of Research Libraries Elizabeth A. Waraksa, Program Director for Research and Strategic Initiatives, Association of Research Libraries With this issue of Research Library Issues (RLI), the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) (re)turns its collective attention to research data management (RDM), a topic consistently identified as a top priority by ARL library directors, and a topic of several recent ARL publications—see for example SPEC Kit 334 on Research Data Management Services (2013)1 and SPEC Kit 354 on Data Curation (2017).2 Here, however, the focus is not so much the data itself as the human labor that goes into curating, preserving, and making data accessible and reusable—those fruitful collaborations across domains that allow “organizations and individuals…to identify and solve problems together, to achieve more together than we could separately,” in the words of Nancy McGovern.3 The thesis offered here is that not only is RDM an ideal scenario for exploring radical collaboration, but that this kind of collaboration has already resulted in demonstrable success in the RDM arena and thus ought to be considered as a model for both nascent and future data management efforts. Research data management is challenging, and many voices are needed to tackle this evolving effort—most crucially, the combined voices of archivists, librarians, and the data creators themselves. In opening this issue of RLI, Nancy McGovern offers definitions and guiding principles for bringing these diverse voices to the table and sustaining radical collaboration, while Amy Nurnberger, in a companion piece, describes this practice in action with the Research Data Alliance. Research data management is a team effort by virtue of its nature it has never been a solo or siloed endeavor. Purdue University, one of
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