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Love Data Week: A celebration of ambitious research

In February, librarians urged students and faculty to “Show Data Some Love” during the fourth annual Love Data Week, an international effort to promote research data services that are available in academic libraries. Participating libraries take to social media to promote services for managing, sharing and preserving data sets.

Organizers unite behind the principle that “research data are crucial for advancing the world’s knowledge,” said Cunera Buys, a librarian who specializes in data management consulting. “Libraries play a role in helping researchers make the most of this resource they’ve worked so hard for.”

Northwestern Libraries had a busy schedule of events during Love Data Week, including:

  • hosting workshops led by data experts from Northwestern’s Research Computing Services, the Knight Lab (Northwestern’s center for innovative journalism technology), and geographic information system librarian Kelsey Rydland, who used Evanston’s own city data to conduct a mapping project.
  • awarding $100 to one of more than 75 entrants in a “data scavenger hunt” that sent participants on an online chase for answers to questions about Northwestern’s data-related services.
  • launching a competition of data analysis and visualization skills using public Evanston data to tell data-driven story about the city. (The competition remains open and is accepting entries from undergraduate and graduate students through April 1.)