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There are many courses available to teach research data management to librarians and researchers. While these courses can help with technical skills, like programming or statistics, and practical knowledge of data life cycles or data sharing policies, there are “soft skills” and non-technical skills that are needed to successfully start and run data services. While there are many important characteristics of a good data librarian, reference skills, relationship building, collaboration, listening, and facilitation are some of the most important. Giving consideration to these skills will help any data librarian with their multifaceted job.


data librarian, soft skills, research data services

Corresponding Author

Margaret Henderson, Health Sciences Librarian, SDSU Library, 5500 Campanile Drive, San Diego, California, 92182-8050; margaret.henderson@sdsu.edu

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© 2020 Henderson. This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.