Data Help with Data Policies, Forms & Procedures Attribution of UNAVCO Support & Community Datasets Data Policy Data Policy FAQ PBO High-Rate GPS Data Policy Real-time Streaming GPS Data Policy Code of Conduct

Data Policy & Related FAQ

The current GAGE Data Policy makes the default accessibility for all data immediately openly-accessible, with no exclusive-use period. However, there is a clause in the policy that allows for an exclusive-use period with approval of the sponsor. This sponsor-approved exclusive-use period can potentially apply to any class of data, i.e. campaign, permanent, continuous, semi-continuous, with comms, without comms, etc. This FAQ is intended to help Principal Investigators with understanding how the new policy has been implemented for GAGE Facility data archiving, how to obtain and document a sponsor-approved exclusive-use period, and, for data users, how to obtain information to appropriately attribute data collected by others.

Please see also our FAQ on dataset DOIs below.

Exclusive Use

  1. How will I notify the GAGE Facility if I have a sponsor-approved exclusive use period?

    The default accessibility for all data, whether from campaign, semi-continuous, or permanent stations, will be that the data are immediately openly-accessible when the GAGE Facility completes the archiving step. If you have sponsor approval for an exclusive-use period, you must notify GAGE using the Request Support form in advance of your initial data delivery. In the Request Support form, state your exclusive-use period in terms of data collection date. Example “I have an NSF approved exclusive-use period of 2 years post collection.” The data collection date is the date of the last epoch of the file and is not necessarily the same as the download date; the collection date can be easily verified by GAGE archive technicians and software. It is also very important to coordinate with archive staff by clearly identifying the data deposits by using the appropriate selections on the Request Support form. Do not assume that GAGE staff know about your sponsor agreements and know that today’s deposit is associated with last year’s deposit that had the exclusive-use period documented.

  2. Will the GAGE Facility independently verify the exclusive-use period identified through the Request Support form?

    No. GAGE staff will not spend time verifying that the PI has sponsor approval. However, if requested we will supply NSF with the names of PIs and data sets that the PI identified as having an exclusive-use period.

  3. I have campaign data collected in November, 2010, that needs to be organized before I can deposit it in the archive. If I deposit it after January 1, 2011, will the current data policy 2-year grace period based on collection date apply, effectively until November, 2012?

    Yes. However, please note the archiving clause of the new data policy “All GAGE (formerly UNAVCO)-facilitated GPS and other GNSS data and metadata must be archived at the GAGE Facility upon collection”. We encourage rapid depositing of data and metadata to improve the odds that nothing is lost and that questions arising during the archiving process can be answered by someone who still has the collection phase fresh in their memory. That said, disorganized data requires extra work for GAGE archiving staff and may result in archiving mistakes. Please make your best effort to organize and deposit your data and metadata in a timely way. When you are ready to deposit your data, please use the Request Support form to ensure that your exclusive use period is documented.

  4. I am writing a proposal to NSF for campaign data collection outside of the US. I am all in favor of GAGE’s openly accessible data policy but I have non-US collaborators who object. How can I assure them that we will have an exclusive-use period?

    NSF has instituted a required Data Management Plan submission with all proposals beginning January 18, 2011. We recommend that within your two-page Data Management Plan, you clearly state your proposed exclusive-use period and your justification. Please state your exclusive-use period in terms of the date of collection of the data. (The data collection date is the date of the last epoch of the file and is not necessarily the same as the download date; the collection date can be easily verified by GAGE archive technicians and software.) Include in the plan that you will comply with GAGE's Data Policy regarding contributing data upon collection and to the guidelines established by GAGE for data and metadata submission for archiving. Assuming that your proposal is funded with no required revision to the proposed exclusive-use period spelled out in your Data Management Plan, the award constitutes sponsor agreement. Because GAGE does not have access to your proposal, we will rely on you to accurately tell us your approved exclusive-use period. This must be documented through our Request Support form at the time that you deposit the data even if you have already submitted a request for support for other services earlier in your project. This is the best way for archiving staff to track your approved exclusive-use period and avoid misunderstandings leading to release of data that should have been withheld.

  5. I wrote my proposal to NSF in 2008 for campaign data collections for three consecutive years: 2009-2011 and have deposited my earlier data in the archive. I did not request an exclusive-use period, but rather assumed the two-year exclusive-use period stated in the GAGE (formerly UNAVCO) Data Policy at the time would apply. May I assume that the two-year exclusive-use period applies for the data to be collected in 2011?

    Please send an e-mail to your NSF sponsor, letting them know that you are current with data archived at GAGE under the project award and that you would like to have a continued two-year exclusive-use period for the final year of the project. If your sponsor agrees, indicate your approved exclusive-use period using the Request Support form at the time that you deposit the 2011 data.

Please address additional questions to>.

Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) for Datasets

  1. What is a DOI for a Dataset?

    The DOI system for datasets works analogously to the system for journal articles. For data, the DOI is a persistent identifier (e.g. for the digital dataset. It provides a globally unique, web compatible, alphanumeric string that allows access to dataset metadata and the digital data. Integral to the functioning of this persistent identifier is the associated citation summary web page maintained by the dataset publisher. The GAGE Facility, as the dataset publisher, maintains the citation summary page referenced by each GAGE/UNAVCO DOI. This page provides the user community with a basic citation and related metadata plus a link to the data and the observational metadata. If the URL for this page must be migrated at GAGE/UNAVCO, or other DOI metadata changes, GAGE/UNAVCO updates the URL and/or metadata within the DOI system; the overall system ensures that the DOI continues to lead the user to the correct page, and the identifier remains meaningful through time.

    As a DataCite Allocating Member, our assignment mechanism utilizes and follows the standards and practices for DOI minting at DataCite, an international consortium dedicated to helping researchers find, access, and reuse data. DataCite in turn utilizes the resolver services from the International DOI Foundation ( Each publishable dataset in the GAGE/UNAVCO Archive has had (or shortly will have) a DOI minted using this mechanism. (The term "publishable dataset" is further explained in the FAQ section.)

  2. I am familiar with DOIs for journal articles. How does the DOI system work for datasets?

    The system works in the same way as for journal articles. A third party registration agent manages the DOI metadata and provides the mechanism for the DOI resolver service ( to work. GAGE is a DOI provider through DataCite and tracks the DOI metadata (author, publisher, publication date, etc.) for the DOIs it mints, and forwards the information to their resolver service. GAGE/UNAVCO maintains a citation summary page (or Landing Page); the URL to this page is uploaded to the registration service. Because the DOI system is meant to provide a way to recover the dataset in question as well as other information to make the dataset useful through time, GAGE has committed through DataCite to maintaining this information and access to the datasets indefinitely.

  3. Which datasets in the GAGE Archive are "publishable" using DOIs?

    GAGE aims to keep extensive metadata about each archived dataset. Datasets that have complete metadata (including principal investigator(s), funding, and sufficient observational metadata such as monument, location, instrumentation), are publishable. Data sets that are incomplete in any way must be withheld from publication.

  4. What metadata are stored in a third party registry when GAGE publishes a dataset?

    The DataCite system allows a variety of metadata to be stored to uniquely define and document the associated dataset. The DataCite metadata schema includes mandatory and optional items. The mandatory metadata are: Identifier (the DOI), Creator (the authors), Title, Publisher, Publication Year. In addition, GAGE also provides certain optional metadata to the DataCite system including geographic location (spatial) information, and related dataset DOIs.

  5. What dataset types does GAGE publish using DOIs?

    GAGE has implemented DOI publication for GPS/GNSS datasets, GPS/GNSS products, InSAR products, and TLS datasets. We plan to make these all available through a single interface.

  6. Where do I find citation information (author, publication date, title, etc.) for published datasets?

    This information is found on the DOI citation summary page for each dataset that has been published. Use the GAGE DOI search to find published GPS/GNSS datasets. For help with finding GPS/GNSS product, InSAR product, or TLS data DOIs, email

  7. I want to link a GAGE dataset DOI on my own web page - how do I do that?

    A proper DOI link on your page (in html) will link to the DOI resolver service at (not, e.g.: <a href=""></a> (not href=""). This will remain valid should there ever be a GAGE/UNAVCO web site reorganization that changes the final landing page URL of the DOI.

  8. How does GAGE handle GPS/GNSS dataset DOIs for campaigns vs. continuous/permanent stations vs. networks of stations and special cases where the Principal Investigators have changed over time?

    For GPS/GNSS datasets (raw and RINEX data), GAGE publishes (assigns DOIs) for four different dataset types, all with associated data that have been archived to quality standards described above. The types are GPS/GNSS Campaign Datasets; GPS/GNSS Continuous Station Datasets; Aggregated Datasets; and Composite Datasets. The first two are considered primary dataset types. The third and fourth types are derived or secondary dataset types because they are composed of two or more datasets of the primary type.

    1. GPS/GNSS Campaign Dataset - This will be a dataset defined between GAGE and the Principal Investigators at the time of archiving, and generally will include observations as raw and/or RINEX data files and metadata from GPS/GNSS data collection at a number of recoverable monuments that occurred within a well-defined time window. Once archiving is complete and the DOI is assigned, there is no intention to add data to the campaign that extends the end time or otherwise modifies the data included in the DOI.

    2. GPS/GNSS Continuous Station Dataset – Observations and metadata from GPS/GNSS raw and/or RINEX data collection at a single recoverable monument. Unlike the campaign dataset type, which is complete and unchanging through time, the Continuous Station Dataset is open ended (until the station is retired). The DOI will be associated with an increasing dataset through time; because of this aspect of this dataset type it is important when citing this data to qualify the citation with an access date of the data and the temporal window of data used in the research. See Citation Guidance for a permanent/continuous station dataset.

    3. Aggregated GPS/GNSS Datasets - These will often be an associated group of campaign datasets or a network of stations. A campaign example is the Mammoth/Mojave 1994 campaign -, which consists of three individual primary datasets: Mammoth, Mojave, and Combined Sites). For permanent/continuous stations, networks or sub-networks of stations may be assigned an aggregated DOI. An example is Plutons GPS Network - The collection of stations aggregated does not have to be a network; in this case, the purpose of the aggregated dataset is for collecting a potentially large number of station DOIs for citing in a journal article (ie, in order to avoid citation lists containing tens or hundreds of dataset references).

    4. Composite GPS/GNSS Datasets - A composite dataset DOI is one that is comprised of two or more subset DOIs that together make up what would normally be considered to be a single dataset. The most common example is a permanent (continuous) GPS/GNSS station where the principal investigator (author) changed at a particular point in time. The existing network (Nucleus) stations that were adopted by GAGE (formerly UNAVCO) as part of PBO are examples. The entire dataset is one DOI and is comprised of a separate DOI for each time period with a different author or set of authors. An example is the composite DOI for the station NOMT -

  9. When I use the DOI search, my datasets are not shown. What is happening?

    We are working to assign the DOIs for all publishable datasets as quickly as possible. If you would like to have your datasets advanced in the queue, please email For help with finding GPS/GNSS product, InSAR product, or TLS data DOIs, email

  10. It would be useful to me to define an aggregated dataset with a DOI consisting of a number of primary data sets that I have in mind. Is there a way to request this?

    This can be done on a case by case basis; please email

Please address additional questions to


Last modified: 2024-06-05  16:27:06  America/Denver