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This is the wiki for the development team of Dryad, a repository to host the data underlying published works in evolutionary biology and related fields. Dryad will allow future investigators to validate published findings, explore new analysis methodologies, repurpose the data for research questions unanticipated by the original authors, and perform synthetic studies such as formal meta-analyses.

Dryad aims to provide one-stop data deposition upon publication by interfacing with specialized repositories which are already required for publication such as Genbank and Treebase. However, for many publications, these repositories do not capture the whole data package. As a result, many important datasets are not being preserved and are no longer available, or usable, at the time that they are sought by later investigators.

To staunch this loss, Dryad is being designed as a "catch-all" repository for numerical tables and all other kinds of published data that do not currently have a home. A major design consideration with these data is to avoid placing an undue burden of metadata generation on individual researchers while at the same time capturing sufficient metadata to enable data discovery and reuse.

We are working with stakeholders from a consortium of journals and scientific societies to develop data sharing policies and ensure the long-term sustainability of the repository.

A special section of the repository named DryEd will package datasets of particular educational value for use in undergraduate and graduate classes.

The development of Dryad is a joint project of NESCent and the UNC Metadata Research Center. This wiki is for the use of the development team. If you would like to obtain access, please send a request to Hilmar Lapp.


We hosted a workshop entitled "Digital data preservation, sharing, and discovery: Challenges for Small Science Communities in the Digital Era" in May 2007. Read the workshop final report for details.