Metadata Technology Collaborating with NORC on DDI Driven Dataset Packaging Tool for NSF SED Survey

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Metadata Technology North America developing new tools to facilitating delivery of National Science Foundation’s Survey of Earned Doctorates data and documentation

Metadata Technology North America Inc. (MTNA) is pleased to announce that it is collaborating with NORC at the University of Chicago towards the capture of new metadata and the development of tools to facilitate and automate the preparation and packaging of the National Science Foundation Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED) survey data.

Since 1957, the Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED) continuously collects data on the number and characteristics of individuals receiving research doctoral degrees from all accredited U.S. institutions. The results of this annual survey are used to assess characteristics and trends in doctorate education and degrees. This information is vital for educational and labor force planners within the federal government and in academia. The SED survey has been conducted in recent years by NORC at the University of Chicago.

Aiming to enhance the packaging processes and resulting data products, the recently initiated project will leverage the Data Documentation Initiative (DDI) XML specification and extend upon the OpenMetadata Framework (OMF) to develop new tools for preparing and submitting the survey outputs to the NSF National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics (NCSES) data repository.

The standard driven application will support the capture of metadata across multiple survey years, facilitate the production of standard documentation, organize the data in friendly formats, and automate the processing workflow, This will overall result in improved data and documentation quality, better timeliness, and alignment on standard best practices.

The project, planned for completion by second quarter of 2013, will also strengthen the OpenMetadata Framework by contributing new features and capabilities. The OpenMetadata Framework (OMF) is a collection of open source libraries and components that have been developed by Metadata Technology North America for the implementation of desktop and web based applications around statistical data and metadata. The framework was first implemented for the Canadian Research Data Center Network with the support of the Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI).

The Data Documentation Initiative (DDI) is an XML specification for the documentation and management of microdata, particularly in socio-economic sciences and the health sector. It is maintained by the DDI Alliance (

NORC at the University of Chicago, established in 1941, is one of the largest social research organizations in the United States. NORC conducts numerous research projects involving opinion survey and other data collection and technology strategies. NORC’s projects are focused in a number of topical areas: society and culture; economics and population; education and child development; health studies; substance abuse; mental health; criminal justice; statistics and methodology; and technology. Within each area, NORC designs and implements surveys and other data collection strategies, conducts advanced statistical and other analysis, provides technical assistance and applies advanced technologies.

Metadata Technology North America Inc. is a privately owned eGovernment data management and information technology solution provider. The Company’s mission is to facilitate production, open access, and improve the quality and use of statistical and scientific data. It specializes in products and services leveraging XML technology, metadata standards, and related best practices. Its key personnel include globally recognized experts in the area of the Statistical Data and Metadata Exchange (SDMX) standard, the Data Documentation Initiative (DDI), and the management of socio-economic data, health data, and official statistics.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the Company and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of other agencies and individuals.

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