Why is Data Cleaning Week organized?

The Data Cleaning Week at the University of Helsinki aims to draw attention to good data management routines and its benefits. This also supports the University of Helsinki’s strategic goals in terms of research quality and open and responsible science. All UH researchers, staff members and students can participate in the Data Cleaning Week on Twitter by using the hashtag #5sdata.

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Text: Juuso Ala-Kyyny & Ville Tenhunen

Data Cleaning Week, organized by University of Helsinki Data Support, aims to highlight the importance of data management through a challenge campaign. Organizing folders, naming files and deleting unnecessary data are everyday data management and research data management (RDM) skills that concern not only researchers, but also teachers, students, and staff members at the university.

So, why is data management important? We put together a few key points:

  • Researchers save time for research when finding and processing data is smooth.
  • Errors are reduced when directories are free of unnecessary files and data.
  • Maintaining and nurturing quality is easier when things are in order.
  • Even publishing may take less work when the data is in order and the researcher knows what the data contains and what it does not.
  • At best, good data management save your money in the long run, as you do not need to buy more disk space right away, but you can free up space.

Data management is related to the quality of research, which is also taken into account in the University of Helsinki’s strategy, in a high level and high-impact research and open research. If the University of Helsinki intends to be a ”a pioneer in the production and exploitation of open knowledge”, as the strategy suggests, data management – not forgetting the services and tools that support it – will be crucial.

The Data Cleaning Week also support lean development at the University of Helsinki. 5S method for better data management is spotlighted in Data Cleaning Week – 5S is a lean tool for improving work efficiency and, above all, maintaining good data management practices.

Participate in Data Cleaning Week!

Take the challenge and participate in the Data Cleaning Week by posting a picture of your cleaning effort to Twitter by using the hashtag #5sdata. The picture can be about folder structure, new file naming system for your group, space created by cleaning – you name it! Remember to challenge your colleagues too!

You can also participate in Data Cleaning Week by sending an email to Data Support: datasupport@helsinki.fi. We convey your message through the Think Open blog, Twitter and Helsinki.fi web site.