Successful Small Data Project: Van Giffen’s Dogs

24 September 2019

Dr. Canan Çakirlar and Esther Scheele received a KDP grant in 2017 for their project: Van Giffen’s Dogs. A financial aid to ensure that a collection of biometric data of 488 dog skulls were digitized and published in EASY.

The project “Van Giffen’s Dogs” focuses on biometric data of 488 dog skulls from 58 (archaeological) sites in the Northern Netherlands. The dog skulls were collected and documented by Professor A.E. Van Giffen, in the early 20th century. Van Giffen was one of the pioneers of Dutch archaeology and archaeozoology.

The handwritten data were digitized and translated during the project. In addition, photos of a selection of intact skulls were added. The Open Access data was then deposited in EASY.

Esther Scheele agrees on the importance of sharing and reusing data: “This dataset is an unparalleled treasure trove of canid osteometric data with sustainable reuse potential for research into dog domestication, the evolution of dog breeds, and cranial variability in canids”. Sharing and reusing data provides new research opportunities.

A KDP grant is extremely suitable for the development or making available of datasets, but may not be suitable for smaller parties. Thanks to the advanced payment by the University of Groningen, the project could be financed by Canan Çakirlar and Esther Scheele. A KDP grant is only paid out after the deposition of a data set in EASY.

The data set of the “Van Giffen’s Dogs” project is available via EASY and is explained in the Journal of Open Archaeological Data.

Additional information

Interested in a KDP grant? The conditions and procedure of the grant application can be found here. You can apply for a KDP grant until 1 October 2019.

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