Numeric and Spatial Data Services Home



Scholarly Commons, 306 Main Library

Fall 2012 Hours:

Walk in Consultations: 1:00-3:00 Mondays

Survey Consultations : 1:00-4:00 Tuesdays

Open Lab: 1:00-5:00 Tuesdays (More Information)

By appointment: email datagis at library dot illinois dot edu

Lync consultations: 1:00-3:00 Wednesdays (call 333-7751); 1:00-3:00 Fridays (call 333-2472)


Karen Hogenboom, Numeric and Spatial Data Librarian

(217-333-2472, hogenboo at illinois dot edu)


2012 Data Purchase Program: Full Announcement

In order to address the needs of faculty and graduate students whose research requires that they access and manipulate commercially available data sets and to better prepare its own personnel to serve new roles on campus, the University Library is soliciting applications from faculty and graduate students who need to purchase numeric or spatial data for their research.  The University Library will make the data purchased or licensed as part of this program available for general use by the campus community.  Award amounts will vary depending upon need and the availability of funding from other sources such as departmental, college, or other grant funds. However, the availability of outside funding is not conditional for receipt of funding from the Library. 

Awards will be targeted toward meeting smaller needs (ca. $5,000 range). However, the amount available to be awarded for individual proposals will depend up on the total number and suitability of applications received.

Awards will be made on a competitive basis after the beginning of the academic year, with acquisitions being processed largely during the fall semester.  Applications will be considered after the deadline as long as funds are available and the purchase can be completed by the end of the fiscal year. 


Eligible Researchers

Faculty and graduate students at the Urbana-Champaign campus whose research requires numeric (i.e., survey, observational) or spatial data.


Eligible Data Sets

Data requests can be for repackaged public data or for data collected by individual researchers that is subsequently made available for a fee.  The library strongly prefers to acquire data that are accessible online rather than on DVD or other tangible storage media.  For licensed data, this grant program will only support a license for one year.  Other library funds may be available to continue the license after the first year but continued access cannot be guaranteed.  Library funds will only be used to purchase data that can be made available to researchers across campus.


Selection Criteria


    * A letter of no more than three pages in length or an online application that articulates the goals of the research project, the importance of the requested data to the research, and the uniqueness or unique functionality of the requested data compared to other sources of the same data (if applicable).  For example, discuss the merits of acquiring commercially repackaged housing data relative to the value of the same data available from a free online source.


    * Data that are accessible on the Internet.
    * Applications that indicate a willingness and interest in engaging members of the ATLAS/University Library Data Services Committee in their research project

How to apply


There are two ways to apply for this program:

1. Addressing the selection criteria above, write a letter describing both the data you are requesting and your research project.  The letter should contain complete contact information for you and names, departmental affiliations and e-mails for other members of your research team, if applicable.  E-mail the letter as an attachment to:

Library/ATLAS Data Services Committee
c/o Karen Hogenboom

2. Submit your application online  Please contact Karen Hogenboom,, if you have questions about this form.


Program Announcement:            September 1, 2012

Application Deadline:                 October 15, 2012

Announcement of Awards:          December 1, 2012

Other requirements:


If the data have been purchased (rather than licensed), the grant recipients must return the data to the library when the project for which the data were purchased is complete.  The library will make the data available as part of its collection.

Grant recipients will give a brownbag talk about how they are using the data for the University Library’s Scholarly Commons, focusing on methodology and issues related to the data rather than on the results of their research.

Publications based on the data purchased with the grant must contain the following acknowledgment:

The author wishes to acknowledge the University Library at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, which provided support for the completion of this research.


Contact information for questions:

Karen Hogenboom                                                          Tom Teper
Numeric and Spatial Data Librarian                                  Associate University Librarian for Collections