eScience in Action

Behind eMammal’s Success: A Data Curator With A Data Standard

  • Jennifer Y Zhao (Smithsonian Institution)
  • William J McShea (Smithsonian Institution)


This paper explores the data challenges of a major collection method in the field of ecology: using infrared-activated cameras to detect wildlife. One such solution, eMammal, is now available to address these struggles. We delineate the key reason behind its success: a data curator who manages an established data standard and communicates with eMammal’s users and stakeholders. We outline the tasks of this data curator, mention how they can work with data librarians, and demonstrate that the data curator position is already applicable in several biological science fields with a few examples. We end by emphasizing the growth of such a position and how it contributes to the research field.

The substance of this article is based upon a lightning talk presentation at RDAP Summit 2018.

Keywords: camera trap, data curator, data management, data standard, ecology, RDAP

How to Cite:

Zhao, J. Y. & McShea, W. J., (2018) “Behind eMammal’s Success: A Data Curator With A Data Standard”, Journal of eScience Librarianship 7(3): 3. doi:

Rights: Copyright Zhao & McShea © 2018

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Published on
20 Dec 2018