The final stage in the data life cycle is preservation and archiving. Preservation of data after the completion of the project has several benefits:
- Increase resource discovery - this means wider dissemination of your data, which has the potential to increase your citation impact factor
- This also depends on your storage decisions. For more information regarding sharing data, please refer to Data Repositories.
- Maintain long-term access
Sustainable File Formats for Long-Term Access
Using a sustainable file format will help your data to be preserved and accessed long term. The file format is a key factor in determining one's ability to use your data in the future.
Formats that will likely remain accessible in the future are:
- Unencrypted - encryption technology can change; an error could render a file unreadable
- Uncompressed - compression technology can change and cause the file to be unopenable
- Commonly used by the research community - common usage of a file format will increase the likelihood of continued updates and compatability with newer software programs and operating systems