Updated January 2022
The U.S. Geological Survey’s (USGS) ownership, responsibility, and accountability for USGS data are evident when USGS scientists use a USGS repository to release their scientific data. In some cases, however, there is value in also serving data through integrated, non-USGS repositories that the USGS deems are trusted or acceptable according to the criteria below.
|Criteria||How criteria are demonstrated|
|Funding/support for the repository is sustainable.||Repository documentation lists persistent sources of funding and provides sustainability and succession plans.|
|Data are easily discovered and available free to the public.||This is stated on repository information page (“About Us”).|
|Commitment to both preserve and serve the data is stated.||This is stated on repository information page (“About Us”).|
|The USGS is able to retain an official metadata record (in the Science Data Catalog) that can be used to identify the deposited dataset within the larger repository data collection.||Citation guidance is stated in repository information for data contributors.|
|Data and metadata can be updated, if needed.||Guidance for updating is stated in repository information for data contributors.|
The following are additional criteria for USGS data managers and data producers to consider in evaluating the suitability of non-USGS repositories.
- Does the repository encourage open or community-based standards and formats that enable automated use of data?
- Does the repository have measures in place to ensure continuous availability?
- Are application program interfaces (APIs) or other web services available for accessing the data? Is there documentation on using APIs and other web services?
- Does the repository use reliable data preservation practices?
- What are the requirements for adding data to the non-USGS repository system? Are they comparable with those for adding data to USGS repositories?
- Does the repository allow attribution to identify data produced by the USGS?
Although no specific certification is required for acceptance as a non-USGS repository, a useful source of standards to follow is available here.
Additional Information and References
Additional information, including a list of acceptable USGS and non-USGS repositories, is available here.
References regarding trusted USGS digital data repositories:
- Standards for Establishing Trusted Repositories for USGS Digital Assets
- U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Trusted Digital Repository (TDR)
- Public Access to Results of Federally Funded Research at the U.S. Geological Survey: Scholarly Publications and Digital Data (Section 7)