Expanding our perspective: Building a sustainable metadata culture


  • Diana L. Magnuson Institute for Social Research and Data Innovation, University of Minnesota
  • Wendy L. Thomas Institute for Social Research and Data Innovation, University of Minnesota




Core Trust Seal, archive, metadata, business process model, preservation


The Institute for Social Research and Data Innovation (ISRDI) at the University of Minnesota submitted an application for approval to the Core Trust Seal (CTS) in June 2022.  In the course of the protracted process to prepare ISRDI materials for the application, we learned five lessons that expanded our perspective on the role of the archive within our organization and committed our institute to building a sustainable metadata culture. By taking the time to review the specialized nature of ISRDI as it developed over time, clarify and document the processes that developed as the intitute matured and expanded, and applying the standards and guidelines supported by the CTS, ISDRI is now in a position to more easily identify areas of future process development and address outstanding needs in terms of our documentation and preservation of our work. These lessons are applicable to research organizations that include the responsibility to preserve a record of their work in the mid- and long-term.


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Magnuson, D.L. (2014) Steven Ruggles interview, University of Minnesota, January 9, 2014.

Magnuson, D.L. (2015a) Wendy Thomas interview, University of Minnesota, March 24, 2015.

Magnuson, D.L. (2015b) “Curating Our Social Science Infrastructure: the MPC/IPUMS Institutional History as a Case Study,” presented at the Social Science History Association, Baltimore, USA, November 12-15, 2015.

Magnuson, D.L. and Ruggles, S. (2022) “Challenges of Large-Scale Data Processing in the 1990s: The IPUMS Experience,” IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, pp. 71-83.

Ruggles, S. (1991a) “Integration of the Public Use Samples of the U.S. Census,” 1991 Proceedings of the American Statistical Association, Social Statistics Section. Alexandria, VA, ASA, pp. 265-370.

Ruggles, S. (Summer 1991b) “The U.S. Public Use Census Microdata Files as a Source for the Study of Long-Term Social Change,” IASSIST Quarterly. https://doi.org/10.29173/iq703.

Ruggles, S. (1992-1995) “Integrated Public Use Microdata Series,” SES-9118299, NSF.

Ruggles, S. (2011) ”Minnesota Population Center: Self Study Report,” University of Minnesota, June 7, 2011.

Van Hook, J.L., Bleakley, C.H. and Hummer, R.A. (2016) ”External Review of the Minnesota Population Center,” June 14-16, 2016.




How to Cite

Magnuson, D. L., & Thomas, W. L. (2023). Expanding our perspective: Building a sustainable metadata culture. IASSIST Quarterly, 47(2). https://doi.org/10.29173/iq1046