This post is part of our Curators’ Corner series. Every so often we’ll feature a different DCN Curator. The series grew out of a community-building activity wherein curators at our partner organizations interview each other “chain-letter style” in order to get to know each other and their work outside of the DCN better. We hope you enjoy these posts!

Adi Ranganath

Adi is a Data librarian in the Center for Research Data and Digital Scholarship (CRDDS) at University of Colorado – Boulder (CU) Libraries. He was interviewed by Dorris Scott in September 2021.

How did you come to your current position?

I came to my current position from New York University (NYU) Libraries, where I was a Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) post-doctoral fellow within their Data Services department.

What do you do?

I do a variety of things. My work at CU primarily consists of teaching, usually in the form of short workshops or brief visiting presentations, but I’m also looking forward to some longer-term teaching opportunities in the future. I do a lot of consulting with students, faculty, and other librarians on data-related projects. I also help to curate and publish datasets on CU Scholar, which is CU Boulder’s institutional repository. And I also work on a variety of other projects with my CRDDS colleagues, as well as my own research.

How much of your job involves data curation?

It varies based on how many submissions are coming into the institutional repository but overall, my guess is that it averages out to about 25% or so.

Why is data curation important to you?

There are a lot of reasons. One big one for me is that I think that data curation facilitates scholarly creativity. One person or research team might collect a dataset for one purpose and someone else might come along and think of a completely different way to use that data which the original creators of the data might never have considered. But data cannot be reused if it’s not legible to a broader audience beyond its creators, and I think data curation is fundamentally about ensuring this legibility and accessibility.

Why is the Data Curation Network important?

I think the DCN ultimately improves the quality of the data curation that’s possible by facilitating a community-wide division of labor that allows all of us all to curate datasets that are broadly within the domain of our methodological or substantive expertise. I think that as curators, when we are able to formally benefit from the collective expertise of colleagues from several different institutions rather than just at our home institutions, it ultimately makes our job easier while also improving the quality of the work that we are able to do.

If you weren’t doing data curation, what would you be doing?

It would have something to do with teaching and education.

What is your favorite cuisine? 

My favorite cuisine is Indian. My family is from India and that’s the cuisine that I grew up on.

What is your favorite city? 

Probably Kyoto. I was there back in high school and it was a city that really made an impression on me. It has a unique atmosphere and it’s definitely a place I would like to go back to.

To learn more about Adi and some of the datasets he’s curated for the DCN see his curator page!

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