Managing Confidentiality and Provenance across Mixed Private and Publicly-Accessed Data and Metadata

TitleManaging Confidentiality and Provenance across Mixed Private and Publicly-Accessed Data and Metadata
Publication TypePresentation
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsVilhuber L, Abowd J, Block W, Lagoze C, Williams J
KeywordsConfidentiality, DDI, PROV, Provenance
Social science researchers are increasingly interested in making use of confidential micro-data that contains linkages to the identities of people, corporations, etc. The value of this linking lies in the potential to join these identifiable entities with external data such as genome data, geospatial information, and the like. Leveraging these linkages is an essential aspect of “big data” scholarship. However, the utility of these confidential data for scholarship is compromised by the complex nature of their management and curation. This makes it difficult to fulfill US federal data management mandates and interferes with basic scholarly practices such as validation and reuse of existing results. We describe in this paper our work on the CED2AR prototype, a first step in providing researchers with a tool that spans the confidential/publicly-accessible divide, making it possible for researchers to identify, search, access, and cite those data. The particular points of interest in our work are the cloaking of metadata fields and the expression of provenance chains. For the former, we make use of existing fields in the DDI (Data Description Initiative) specification and suggest some minor changes to the specification. For the latter problem, we investigate the integration of DDI with recent work by the W3C PROV working group that has developed a generalizable and extensible model for expressing data provenance.

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