DANS: Data Archiving and Networked Services
van Horik, Rene
DANS is the new Dutch organization, which has been tasked with the preservation and permanent access to research data in the humanities and the social sciences. The two main scientific administrative organizations in the Netherlands, the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) and the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), are jointly responsible for DANS. DANS aims to promote (interdisciplinary) collaboration with and among researchers. DANS is also the Dutch national partner in European and other international data organizations. DANS is also an intermediary to researchers for the delivery of large databases from organizations such as Statistics Netherlands, The Social and Cultural Planning agency and the Topographical Service. Already existing data archives like the social science data archive 'Steinmetzarchief' and the Netherlands Historical Data Archive (NHDA) have been merged in DANS. DANS has been mandated to expand and improve the current data research infrastructure. New initiatives for data services and data archives are being developed in fields where such facilities have been lacking until recently. These TOPical Programmes (TOPs) are set up in collaboration with research groups. Work on the renewal of the infrastructure for digital data archiving is in progress. Innovation and staying ahead in the ICT-development is one of the main spearheads of this new organization. To be able to apply fundamental research findings to systems used for archiving and providing access to data DANS has established its own development team. For the acquisition of data sets, collaboration with faculties, research schools and academic institutes will be invigorated. DANS developed in collaboration with researchers in the field and the Netherlands Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment (VROM) a user-friendly repository for research archiving. Now researchers are able to place their research data in DANS compliant data repositories. They can rely on a safe preservation and curation of their data an they can share their data with other researchers. DANS aims to make access to research data as open as possible.