The key focus of these reports is data curation, a term generally defined as a set of activities that includes the preserving, maintaining, archiving, and depositing of data to keep it secure, intact, and accessible for reuse.
The term can also comprise the conceptualization and creation of digital objects. In this respect, data curation encompasses the life cycle of data from their inception to their reuse to their transformation into new knowledge products.
The massive scale of data creation and accumulation, together with the increasing dependence on data in research and scholarship, are profoundly changing the nature of knowledge discovery, organization, and reuse. As our intellectual heritage moves more deeply into online research and teaching environments, new modes of inquiry emerge; digital data afford investigations across disciplinary boundaries in the sciences, social sciences, and humanities, further muddling traditional boundaries of inquiry.