How was the data set created?

Were parts of the data previously packaged in a publication or distributed informally?

  1. Were the source data published?
    • Yes; describe it in the Source_Citation (see How to cite a publication)
    • No; try to get at least the source data's creator, a date produced, and a title:
      1. Who produced the source data?
                  Originator:  Name
                  Originator:  Another name
                  Originator:  . . .
      2. When were the source data produced?
                  Publication_Date:  Year as YYYY

        If the data weren't published, use this to indicate the date that you received the data. That will help the user understand whether you worked from a relatively old copy of the source data or not.

      3. Is there a title for the source data? If there isn't a title in the source itself, make up a descriptive title.
                  Title:  text
      4. Is the source data available on the internet?
                  Online_Linkage:  a URL
  2. Were the source data compiled at a particular scale?
            Source_Scale_Denominator:  number, just the denominator, like 24000, not 1:24000
  3. What time period do the source data represent?
                See How to describe time periods
              Source_Currentness_Reference:  What the time period is
  4. How do you refer to this source in other parts of the documentation?
            Source_Citation_Abbreviation:  short text
  5. What information from this source did you use?
            Source_Contribution:  text

What similar or related data should the user be aware of?


Use the Cross_Reference to tell the user about data that were produced in concert with these data but are not included with them, data that are similar in nature and function, and data that would normally be of interest to someone who is considering using these data.

Next:How were the source data generated, processed, and modified?
Previous:Original observations made by the authors and their cooperators