39 Association of Research Libraries Research Library Issues 296 2018 To confront the challenges of collaboration, at the onset of our project we identified some specific barriers that might keep us from moving together toward a shared vision. We revisit these barriers annually and consider ways to reduce or eliminate these barriers. Some of the challenges that our project has faced include the following: Institutional priorities and culture. Each institution has different goals and priorities for how they approach data services. Institutional competition and internal competition (for example, tech transfer office goals at odds with library repository mission) could prevent DCN collaboration. Multi-institutional collaborations must deal with different institutional and local cultures. Site visits are planned at each member institution to discuss the project goals and outcomes with institution administration. Unvoiced concerns. Are we doing a good job at onboarding new DCN members? Are we building curator buy-in? Or creating opportunities to voice dissenting opinions? Regular in-person meetings have been one way to bring everyone in the DCN together. At these events we encourage multiple communication methods (for example, writing anonymous feedback and leaving it on the “ideas” table). Indeterminable or unknown value proposition. There is scant market research or literature to show that curated data are more valuable to researchers. What if our efforts are not valued or not well communicated? What if the costs outweigh the value? Demand for data curation is low, but metrics fail to tell the whole story. Our research agenda includes white papers describing the value of data curation to funders and stakeholders and documenting the cost savings of collaborative data curation. Complex and evolving ecosystem. Data sharing requirements and norms are in flux. Data curation is only part of a larger
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