Collaborate with data

Research today involves large amounts of data, numbers, references, images and more. Collaborative research teams need to be able to share the readings they have found, the data they have gathered, and the information they have created. This section covers social bookmarking, reference sharing and data sharing.

Social bookmarking Top

Social bookmarking allows you to share the websites you find useful or entertaining (as well as letting you access your bookmarks from any computer).

  • Pinterest lets you bookmark, tag and summarise websites visually and display them by category.
  • Delicious lets you bookmark and tag websites you find useful, share your links with colleagues and use others’ tags to explore topics of interest.
  • Diigo allows you to highlight, annotate and attach 'sticky notes' to the pages you have bookmarked. You can also use it to organise your notes, pictures and other information.
  • CiteULike bookmarklets allow you to easily store articles you read and you can organise and tag them. You can also track other people who are reading the same articles as you and create automated article recommendations.

Activity - social bookmarking Top

  1. Open one of the social bookmarking sites mentioned above or choose your own.
  2. Search for keywords that are relevant to your research.
  3. Can you find other users who are interested in your area? If so, see what sites they have bookmarked.

Sharing references Top

A variety of online tools help you share, as well as manage, your scholarly references.

  • Use EndNote to tag, annotate, organise, share and publicise references relevant to your research.
  • Use Mendeley to set up collaborative projects, work and discuss in groups, and share data.
  • Use Zotero to create shared libraries or publish your library so all researchers can see it.

Sharing data Top

As well as references and papers, you will have ideas, plans, information, images and research data that you need to share with your colleagues. You may also need to write, read and edit each other's drafts. There are some systems you can use to assist you to share information effectively while overcoming issues relating to limits on attachment file sizes and version control where several people are working on the same files. When sharing data always protect sensitive data by using appropriate security passwords.

OneDrive (staff and students) and Syncplicity (staff only) are the preferred file sharing tools for QUT staff and student use. Information about these tools can be found on the Digital Workplace and QUT Students websites.

  • Cloudstor is designed for short term storage and transfer of large files for members of AARNet (Australian Academic and Research Network) and is useful for those times when your files exceed the data limits for your email. As a member of the QUT research community you have access to Cloudstor using the institutional account. You can save files of up to 100 GB for twenty days and make them available to up to 100 colleagues.
  • Dropbox is a freely available web based file hosting service that provides the first 2GB of storage free. Create your own file structure and store digital data or files as you would on your computer. There is also a local client for your desktop computer which allows you to drag and drop files between both systems. This synchronises with the cloud drive so files can be accessed at any computer through the local client or the web browser, smartphone or tablet. Dropbox is easy to use, but always keep several backups of your master documents and data.