DOCUMENTATION IN THE MIDDLE: ACTIVE PHASE PROJECT DOCUMENTATION FOR INCLUSIVE AND EFFECTIVE TEAM-BASED RESEARCH
Documentation is an essential component of good data management and yet data service providers often struggle to provide effective support to researchers. There are materials available for creating or assisting researchers with documentation at the beginning and end of a project; from data management plans to documenting data for archival purposes. However, we don’t yet have a solid understanding of how research teams incorporate (or not) documentation into their everyday work.
I will describe a collaboration among academic librarians to investigate, analyze, and synthesize real and ideal documentation practices within research teams in order to develop a universal project manual documentation template. It is our contention that “lab manuals” or “project organization protocols” will enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of research teams, while creating an inclusive environment by making local practices and expectations clear to all team members regardless of previous research experience and disciplinary background.
Through presentation of a beta lab manual template, I will describe the basic considerations that any researcher from any discipline should consider for their local documentation in support of team-based research projects, and I will explain how such documentation may benefit research teams seeking to actively support diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts.