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Number 7 (1/2002)


Datasets for various uses

Sami Borg March 2002

During its three years of operation, FSD has been able to stabilise many of its basic operations. In 2001, more than a hundred new datasets were archived, and over 160 sets were delivered for secondary use - a figure which slightly surpassed even our own expectations. In February 2002, the number of datasets in our holdings adds up to approximately 300.

This year, the Archive focuses on intensifying the use of the data already included in FSD's collections. This is best accomplished by handing out continuous and diverse information. Possibilities of data use are limitless in both research and teaching. Tips may be received from abroad, too: For example, a recent report on the use of numerical data in Great Britain shows that at local universities, examples and simple exercises based on numerical data are frequently put to use not only on method courses, but also in a number of other ways.

From FSD's standpoint, it seems evident that established researchers can usually locate the necessary data services without much difficulty. However, there is always room for improvement. Giving concrete examples on how secondary data can be used is the best way to encourage students and researchers to utilise FSD's services.

Teachers and counsellors play a decisive role in that students become aware of FSD's cost-free services. This current year, the Archive will, therefore, concentrate on disseminating information to those in charge of graduate schools and method courses.

In order to reach the above mentioned goals, the Archive will produce an increasing number of articles and reviews for scientific journals. The goal is introduce the contents of the archived datasets, and demonstrate the different possibilities of secondary use. We hope that these articles will increase the awareness of the Archive and its datasets, and activate people working in different disciplines to use FSD's services.

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