Submit Data

Got data? Ready to share it with the world? Read on to learn how. Remember that all data collected with support from the MCM LTER must be archived within two years of collection per our funding requirements. Also, please keep in mind that the data archival process can take time depending on the complexity of the dataset(s) and other IM priorities. We recommend starting the process (step 1) at least two months in advance of your deadline. For submission of long-term core datasets, please refer to the instructions linked here.

  • Step 1. Contact us and let us know you would like to submit data. We'll guide you on how to organize your data and share tips for an optimal data publishing experience.
  • Step 2. Download the most recent version of the metadata template (linked below) and try working through it with your data. Feel free to look around the MCM data portal for examples on how to structure your metadata (newest datasets are listed first). As you have questions, we can exchange emails, or alternatively, we have found working through questions and concerns over a Zoom meeting often works best for both parties.
  • Step 3. Submit your data package (completed metadata form + dataset(s)) to the information manager at least three weeks prior to your deadline. 
  • Step 4. The information manager will archive your data package in the MCM database and web-based MCM data portal, as well as in the Environmental Data Initiative (EDI), which is a FAIR-aligned repository that meets funding and journal requirements for high quality data archival. 
  • Step 5. Once the dataset has been archived in EDI, it will receive a digital object identifier (DOI). It is very important to always properly cite data packages in any publications and proposals where the data are used! An inline citation should be included in a Data Availability Statement (this heading may vary by journal) as well as a full citation in the references section (just like you would with the literature). We recommend using the citation format shown on the landing page for your data package in the MCM web portal (as opposed to EDI). We'd also like to encourage you to list your data citations on your CV.

To learn more about the importance of proper data citation, we recommend this short editorial written by our information manager for BioScience.