Initiated by the University of Tartu Library and the University of Tartu Natural History Museum and financed by the Estonian Research Council, the University of Tartu joined DataCite in 2014, thus acquiring the right of assigning the unique DOI identifiers (Digital Object Identifier) to Estonian research data (both to singular objects and data collections). During the first year, the DataCite Eesti web-based platform, the UT research data repository Datadoi and automated solutions for the PlutoF and SARV databases were developed and applied, and the first DOIs were assigned to the research data at the QsarDB open repository.
In early 2015, the DataCite Eesti Consortium was formed with the aim of ensuring extensive finding and using of quality research resources created by its member research institutions. The DataCite Eesti project is unique in Eastern Europe and it has a substantial impact on the making of Estonian research data visible and accessible for international users.
WHAT IS DOI?
The DOI system is an internationally recognised and supported standard, managed by the International DOI Foundation. For more information, see http://doi.org
Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) are persistent identifiers that are used to uniquely identify an object (which may itself be physical or digital) in the digital environment. A DOI name is easily and quickly resolved using the International DOI Foundation resolver, http://doi.org. For example: the persistent identifier http://dx.doi.org/10.15152/QDB.124 refers to the address http://qsardb.org/repository/handle/10967/124 that may change. A simple explanation of the working principle of DOI would be that the data centre connects a DOI with a web address (URL) of a certain data collection. When the data centre moves the data collection elsewhere or changes its address, they also have to renew the DOI so that it would still refer to the same data in their new location. For more information about how DOIs work, see IDF web page.
HOW TO BEGIN?
Research data are registered through the research institutions that have joined the DataCite Eesti Consortium. In order to get information, a representative of a research group or a single researcher should contact their organisation and/or the DataCite Eesti administrator. Several actions need to be taken for getting DOIs. The DataCite Eesti web page contains an updated list of data repositories that come under Consortium members. The rules may differ at different data repositories; therefore, it would be useful to get acquainted with the guidelines of the concrete repository you plan to use.
We do not have a set definition for research data – the material that researchers use as data is so varied across disciplines and research methods that to define one would inevitably leave out something important! Some people will tell you they can’t say what data is, but they know it when they see it. So what you define as research data is up to you, but we can point you towards this example definition: The NSF considers data to be “any and all complex data entities from observations, experiments, simulations, models, and higher order assemblies, along with the associated documentation needed to describe and interpret the data”.
Examples of data that already had DataCite DOIs include text archives, image collections, software, physical objects and theses.
I am a researcher, how can I get a DOI for my data?
The DataCite service in Estonia works with organisations. Individuals should contact their institution or relevant data centre for advice, in the first instance. If your institution is not working with the DataCite Eesti Consortium, then please contact to discuss your requirements further.
Can I get DOIs for my project to test how they would work for me/my institution?
Yes! We can set up a testing account for you. This will allow you to create testing DOIs so that you can see how well the system works for you, and how you would create DOIs for your content. These DOIs will NOT be permanent and will not resolve via the global Handle registry (although they will still resolve with the URL we give you), but they will behave as normal DOIs in every other way. Contact us to find out more and set up an account. (See DataCite test accounts for more).
What if I am not based in Estonia?
If you are not based in Estonia, please check the DataCite website to discover if there are members based in your country. A list of members can be found here.
If there is currently no DataCite representative in your country, contact the Managing Agent, using the form available on datacite.org or contact DataCite Eesti Consortium to discuss your requirements further.
What is the mandatory metadata and why is it necessary?
Metadata is an integral part of the DataCite system. By associating good quality metadata with a DOI in the Metadata Store, your data is made more visible, accessible and usable. The mandatory metadata provides the key elements of a citation. For example:
The DataCite Metadata Schema is available from here.
The metadata can also be used for other purposes, such as search via the DataCite Metadata Store or it can be integrated into other systems or web sites using the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting (OAI-PMH).
What happens if we do not want to renew our account?
If you decide that you no longer want or need to create DOIs, you will still be responsible for maintaining the DOIs you have already assigned. You will keep your DataCite account to do this, but we will simply disable your ability to mint new DOIs.
Can I delete a DOI?
No. DOIs are intended to be persistent identifiers and, as such, cannot be deleted. If data is no longer available, you should provide a landing page for the DOI that explains why the data is no longer available.