Engaging Researchers in Data Management with LabTablet, an Electronic Laboratory Notebook

  • Ricardo Carvalho AmorimEmail author
  • João Aguiar Castro
  • João Rocha da Silva
  • Cristina Ribeiro
Conference paper
Part of the Communications in Computer and Information Science book series (CCIS, volume 563)


Dealing with research data management can be a complex task, and recent guidelines prompt researchers to actively participate in this activity. Emergent research data platforms are proposing workflows to motivate researchers to take an active role in the management of their data. Other tools, such as electronic laboratory notebooks, can be embedded in the laboratory environment to ease the collection of valuable data and metadata as soon as it is available. This paper reports an extension of the previously developed LabTablet application to gather data and metadata for different research domains. Along with this extension, we present a case study from the social sciences, concerning the identification of the data description requirements for one of its domains. We argue that the LabTablet can be crucial to engage researchers in data organization and description. After starting the process, researchers can then manage their data in Dendro, a staging platform with stronger, collaborative management capabilities, which allows them to export their annotated datasets to selected research data repositories.


Field Trip Research Domain Laboratory Notebook Metadata Record Data Preservation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Project SIBILA-Towards Smart Interacting Blocks that Improve Learned Advice, reference NORTE-07-0124-FEDER000059, funded by the North Portugal Regional Operational Programme (ON.2-O Novo Norte), under the National Strategic Reference Framework (NSRF), through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), and by national funds, through the Portuguese funding agency, Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (FCT). João Rocha da Silva is also supported by research grant SFRH/BD/77092/2011, provided by the Portuguese funding agency, Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (FCT).


  1. 1.
    Amorim, R.C., Castro, J.A., da Silva, J.R., Ribeiro, C.: LabTablet: semantic metadata collection on a multi-domain laboratory notebook. In: Closs, S., Studer, R., Garoufallou, E., Sicilia, M.-A. (eds.) MTSR 2014. CCIS, vol. 478, pp. 193–205. Springer, Heidelberg (2014) Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Amorim, R.C., Castro, J.A., Silva, J.R., Ribeiro, C.: A comparative study of platforms for research data management: interoperability, metadata capabilities and integration potential. In: Rocha, A., Correia, A.M., Costanzo, S., Reis, L.P. (eds.) New Contributions in Information Systems and Technologies. AISC, vol. 353, pp. 101–111. Springer, Heidelberg (2015) CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Borgman, C.L.: Advances in information science: the conundrum of sharing research data. J. Am. Soc. Inf. Sci. Technol. 63(6), 1059–1078 (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Castro, J.A., da Silva, J.R., Ribeiro, C.: Creating lightweight ontologies for dataset description. Practical applications in a cross-domain research data management workflow. In: IEEE/ACM Joint Conference on Digital Libraries (JCDL), pp. 313–316, London (2014)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    da Silva, J.R., Castro, J.A., Ribeiro, C., Lopes, J.C.: The Dendro research data management platform: applying ontologies to long-term preservation in a collaborative environment. In: Proceedings of the iPres 2014 Conference (2014)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Lynch, C.A.: Institutional repositories: essential infrastructure for scholarship in the digital age. Association for Research Lybraries. Bimonthly Report no.226 (2003)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Lyon, L.: Dealing with data: roles, rights, responsibilities and relationships. Consultancy Report, UKOLN, pp. 1–65, June 2007Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Jason, T.: Nickla and Matthew B Boehm. Proper laboratory notebook practices: protecting your intellectual property. J. Neuroimmune Pharmacol. 6(1), 4–9 (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Rice, R.: Applying DC to institutional data repositories. In: Proceedings of the International Conference on Dublin Core and Metadata Applications, pp. 212-212 (2008)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Tenopir, C., Allard, S., Douglass, K., Aydinoglu, A.U., Wu, L., Read, E., Manoff, M., Frame, M.: Data sharing by scientists: practices and perceptions. PLoS ONE 6(6), e21101 (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Treloar, A., Wilkinson, R.: Rethinking metadata creation and management in a data-driven research world. In: IEEE Fourth International Conference on eScience, pp. 782–789 (2008)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Willis, C., Greenberg, J., White, H.: Analysis and synthesis of metadata goals. J. Am. Soc. Inf. Sci. Technol. 63(8), 1505–1520 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ricardo Carvalho Amorim
    • 1
    Email author
  • João Aguiar Castro
    • 1
  • João Rocha da Silva
    • 1
  • Cristina Ribeiro
    • 1
  1. 1.INESC TEC–Faculdade de Engenharia da Universidade do PortoPortoPortugal

Personalised recommendations