Locating Data for Research: Data Collections and Resources for Thesis Writing, Teaching, and Grant Development for the Social Sciences and the Environment


James W McNally, Director, NACDA Program on Aging
Kathryn Lavender, Program Manager, NACDA Program on Aging

Researchers increasingly recognize the value of public use data for secondary research, thesis development, training and education and the development of independent research grants. As cutting edge international studies are emerging across Asia, Latin America, Europe, and increasingly Africa the opportunities for cross-national and comparative research are growing exponentially. This is a particularly exciting time to work, due to the large number of trained research professionals working within their home countries and providing culturally grounded interpretations of results. An ongoing barrier, however, is knowing where and what kind of data are available for secondary analysis.

The creation and maintenance of sustainable data archives can be challenging but it offers clear advantages for a national and international research strategy. Data that is preserved can be used by multiple researchers, testing a variety of hypotheses and increasing the return on investment to the expensive process of data collection. Having an internally managed archival system also provides greater control and autonomy in the equitable distribution of data resources. This workshop, sponsored by IAFOR and the National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging (NACDA) will offer hands-on examples of how to discover data resources, obtain them and then implement them as part of a research strategy. Regardless of whether or not you are a student looking for a thesis topic, an instructor looking for research material to using classroom teaching, or an established researcher looking for new opportunities the wealth of publicly available data has created almost unlimited opportunities to explore new themes and to collaborate with other researchers worldwide. NACDA has been in existence for over 35 years, and its preserves and really distributes over 1,500 studies on the lifecourse and health in the United States and worldwide. Funded by the National Institute on Aging in the United States, NACDA represents one of the world’s largest collections of research data. NACDA is only one of many such organizations, and increasingly these data resources can be found, if not in your home country then only a click away via the Internet.

The workshop will introduce you to NACDA and are many research partners across the world. All researchers attending The Asian Conference on Aging & Gerontology 2019 (AGen2019), The Asian Conference on the Social Sciences 2019 (ACSS2019) or The Asian Conference on Sustainability, Energy & the Environment 2019 (ACSEE2019) are welcome to participate in this workshop, ask questions and learn about data resources you can use for research, classroom instruction or in developing a research paper or thesis for your college classes. All you need is your laptop or mobile device and our instructors will help you better understand the wealth of information that lies at your fingertips.

An IAFOR Workshop in collaboration with the University of Michigan

Read presenter biographies.

Posted by IAFOR