Q. I'm starting a group research project and have been asked to determine the best way to organize the research that will be done to provide continuity throughout the life of the project. Can you assist by recommending some information management tools?


It's great that your team is identifying their research management tools early in the project! There are many possible scenarios for working together as a team, so I'm going to share what I'd personally recommend investigating, but there are of course other options out there, depending on the preferences of your team members.

First, I recommend Zotero as a great, collaborative citation manager with options to use as a team. Since it's open source, it's freely available to everyone across institutions, has an active user community and support, and plenty of tools - a web option, browser extensions, and a desktop client - to easily save and share your research review and format bibliographies and citations. There is a paid account option to add storage space, but if that's not in your team's budget, you can pair it with a shared Dropbox folder to store the pdfs or other files to keep the full text handy.

Secondly, you might consider using OSF (Open Science Framework) as a project and information management tool for your team. You can sync a variety of storage and other tools in one place (OSF works with Zotero, Dropbox, Google Drive, and more). ASU is an institutional affiliate of OSF, so you can create accounts using your ASURITE log in information to make it easy to get started. OSF also has an active user community with a lot of guidance targeting research groups (for example, this getting started page)

The Citation Management Library Guide includes some other tools for managing your information - both Mendeley and Endnote are proprietary (rather than open source) tools, so will have more limitations on access and use depending on institutional affiliations of all your team members and subscription options. I personally prefer using open source tools when available and possible (and both OSF and Zotero are great tools!).


    Last Updated: Jan 18, 2024 Views: 33

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