McGoogan News

Don’t Overlook Data.gov

By Emily Glenn

Open data is free, publicly available data that anyone can access and use without restrictions—and it can be fascinating.

Data.gov organizes nearly 200,000 different datasets from 174 agencies and 13 organization types across 14 topics spanning eight sectors (Local Government,  Consumer, Business, Climate, Health, Energy, Agriculture, and Education). While Data.gov is for federal open data, state, local, and tribal governments can share metadata—data that describe the open data– for greater discoverability of their datasets. This metadata is hosted alongside federal data and helps to “surface” data that otherwise might stand alone on an unconnected or lesser-known web space.

Here is a sampling of some data described or hosted on Data.gov that may be new to you:

  • Biodiversity Information Serving Our Nation (BISON), is a web-based information system allowing users to find, explore, and download biological occurrence data for species (g., plants, animals, fungi) that occur at a particular location and time in the United States (U.S.). In the Omaha area, there are 65,498 georeferenced species, including Poecile atricapillus, also known as the black-capped chickadee.
  • Woozy keeps you updated on the most recent recalls issued by the Food & Drug Administration and the Consumer Product Commission. See product images, descriptions, and contact information to track and learn about recalled products. You can also customize your feed to follow specific reasons like undeclared food allergens or baby products.  The Red Cross Hurricane app and Radiation Emergency Medical Management (REMM) app also use open data to serve up Safety Apps.
  • Creative Class County Codes, provided by the Economic Research Service (ERS) of the Department of Agriculture, indicate a county’s share of population employed in occupations that require “thinking creatively.” Variables used to construct the ERS creative class measure include number and percent employed in creative class occupations and a metro/nonmetro indicator for all counties, 1990, 2000, and 2007-2011.
  • 500 Cities: Local Data for Better Health represents a first-of-its-kind effort to release information on a large scale for cities and small areas within those cities. It includes estimates for the 500 largest US cities and approximately 28,000 census tracts within these cities. Data were provided by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Division of Population Health, Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch. The Health topics data catalog and HeathData.gov incorporate a wide range of health-related data.

A series of impact profiles provide examples of how open government data has been leveraged to some benefit, such as AccuWeather, the weather forecasting service, and City-Data, a hub for demographics, crime rates, weather patterns, home values, cost of living and more in U.S. cities. If you use any of these datasets, you too can submit stories describing an application or solution derived from a dataset on Data.gov.

ResearchGate and article sharing

ResearchGate is a popular social media platform for scholars to share their work and communicate with others. Recently, major scientific publishers have requested that ResearchGate remove any articles in which publishers hold copyright. Publishers had been in discussion with ResearchGate about sending take-down notices to ResearchGate—to the tune of hundreds of thousands of notices. Read more about what has transpired here.

What does that mean for those with ResearchGate accounts or for article sharing in general?

Most articles published in the scientific literature are under the ownership of the publisher, not the author. If author copyrights are negotiated or if the article is open access, then the author retains copyright. When work is owned by an entity other than the author, only that entity holds the right to post the final version of the article. That means that the full text of the final published version, called the “version of record,” may not be posted to a personal or professional website, repository, or social network like ResearchGate. There may be a few exceptions, but the majority of copyright transfer agreements signed by the author do restrict posting the final published version.

With these restrictions in mind, how can you share your work with others?

Your ability to share your work depends on the copyright transfer agreement you signed with the publisher. Most major publishers permit you to share the final published version of your work with colleagues, with students in classes that you teach, with conference attendees, and for other limited audiences. However, you may not be able to share that final published version online.

For online dissemination of your work, most publishers permit authors to post what is called the “author’s final” or “pre-print” version of an article—the version that exists before copyediting, before the masthead, and before final publication markup. This is the version that has been submitted and accepted for publication. This “pre-print” submitted version, as well as the publisher’s peer reviewed or “post-print” version, can often be shared via websites, repositories, or social networks, but only after a specified embargo period. To see which version of your article is allowed, you can search SHERPA/RoMEO, a resource that compiles article sharing permissions.

At UNMC, you can make your pre-print and post-print scholarly works available to colleagues around the world by submitting them to DigitalCommons@UNMC. DigitalCommons is a repository of scholarly work at UNMC, hosted by the McGoogan Library of Medicine. Simply email your work to digitalcommons@unmc.edu and library staff will upload your files, add descriptive information required by the publisher, then release works (following any specified embargo period). DigitalCommons offers extensive usage information, such as downloads, referrals, and geographic distribution.

For more information regarding article sharing and DigitalCommons@UNMC, contact Heather Brown at hlbrown@unmc.edu or 402-559-7097.

Search tips: Finding articles written by nurses

By Alissa Fial

There are times, for research purposes, you will need an article written by a nurse. For that, you can search CINAHL (Cumulative Index of Nursing and Allied Health Literature).

Once you have established your search terms, review the Limit Your Results section. You may choose either the First Author is Nurse or Any Author is Nurse option.

Now, when you conduct a search, it will that ensure at least one of the authors is a nurse.