Data Risk Factors

From Federation of Earth Science Information Partners

Data collections can face a variety of risk factors. This page provides a set of resources that will be used by members of the ESIP Data Stewardship Committee to analyze and categorize these factors. The goal of this activity is to inform and enable a) individuals and organizations who manage data collections, and b) individuals and organizations who are wanting to help to reduce the risks associated with data preservation and stewardship.




Anderson, William L., Faundeen, John L., Greenberg, Jane, & Taylor, Fraser. (2011). Metadata for data rescue and data at risk. In Conference on Ensuring Long-Term Preservation in Adding Value to Scientific and Technical Data.

Downs, Robert R. & Chen, Robert S. (2017). Curation of scientific data at risk of loss: Data rescue and dissemination. In Johnston, Lisa (Ed). Curating Research Data. Volume One, Practical Strategies for Your Digital Repository. Association of College and Research Libraries.

Griffin, R.E. (2015). When are old data new data? GeoResJ, 6: 92–97.

Hsu, L., Lehnert, K.A., Goodwillie, A., Delano, J.W., Gill, J.B., Tivey, M.A., Ferrini, V.L., Carbotte, S.M., Arko R.A. (2015). Rescue of long-tail data from the ocean bottom to the Moon: IEDA Data Rescue Mini-Awards, GeoResJ, 6:108-114,

Ryan, H. (2014). Occam’s razor and file format endangerment factors. Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Digital Preservation (iPres), October 6-10, 2014: Melbourne, Australia (pp. 179-188).

Thompson, C.A., Robertson, W. D., & Greenberg, J. (2014). Where have all the scientific data gone? LIS perspective on the data-at-risk predicament. College & Research Libraries, 75(6), 842-861.

Michener, William K., et al. “Nongeospatial Metadata for the Ecological Sciences.” Ecological Applications, vol. 7, no. 1, Feb. 1997, pp. 330–42. Wiley Online Library, doi:10.1890/1051-0761(1997)007[0330:NMFTES]2.0.CO;2. [0330:NMFTES2.0.CO;2/abstract]


Guidelines to the Rescue of Data At Risk,

Research Data Alliance Data Rescue Interest Group.

US Geological Survey. 2016 Data at Risk Project. -- Link to Risk Evaluations and Reporting criteria:

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Climate Database Modernization Program.

International Environmental Data Rescue Organization (IEDRO),

Tan, L. S., S. Burton, R. Crouthamel, A. van Engelen, R. Hutchinson, L. Nicodemus, T. C. Peterson, F. Rahimzadeh. (2004). Guidelines on Climate Data Rescue. WMO/TD No. 1210. Ed. by P. Llansó and H. Kontongomde. Geneva, Switzerland: World Meteorological Organization.

Beaverson, Sheena. (2009). Data Deaccessioning Guidelines for the NSIDC DAAC.

NESDIS Data Archive Board, (2002). Scientific Data Stewardship - Executive Summary.


The Rescue of Data At Risk: An RDA / CODATA Workshop

Agenda -


Presentation slides -


Center for Research Libraries and Online Computer Library Center, Inc. (2007). Trustworthy Repositories Audit & Certification: Criteria and Checklist.

Data Preservation Sub-Committee of the USGS Fundamental Science Practices Advisory Committee (FSPAC). (2015). FSPAC Data Preservation Criteria for a Trusted Digital Repository.

Data Seal of Approval and ICSU World Data System. (2016). Core Trustworthy Data Repositories Requirements.

McGovern, N. Y. (2016). DPM “Stack”: A Management Infrastructure Frame for Digital Preservation that Parallels Technical Infrastructure.

Nestor Certification Working Group. (2013). Explanatory Notes on the Nestor Seal for Trustworthy Digital Archives.

Peng, G. (2015). The scientific data stewardship maturity assessment model template. Version: NCDC-CICS-SMM-0001-Rev.1 v4.0 06/23/2015.

Rans, J. and Whyte, A. (2017). Using RISE: the Research Infrastructure Self-Evaluation Framework.

Stall, S. (2016, December). So You want to Be Trustworthy: A repository’s Guide to Taking Reasonable Steps Towards Achieving ISO16363 . Poster presented at the 2016 AGU Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA.


Downs, RR. 2009. Managing Risks to Scientific Data, Presented at the NYU/IBM Workshop on Managing Data Risk: Acquisition, Processing, Retention and Governance. New York, NY, April 24, 2009. Columbia University Academic Commons,

Ramapriyan, H.K. 2017. NASA's EOSDIS, Trust and Certification. Presented at 2017 ESIP Summer Meeting, Bloomington, IN.