• The great rift: Gaps between administrative records and knowledge created through secondary analysis.

      David, Martin; Robbin, Alice (Elsevier, 1981)
      Law, mission, and information management practices inhibit access to computerized administrative records produced by state government. Research use or secondary analysis is not on the agenda of the agency administrator. Computerized records are not routinely maintained or preserved. Records managers and archivists for public records do not participate in decisions about retaining or destroying computerized records. These findings emerged from a recently completed cooperative study conducted by the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the State Historical Society of Wisconsin on the impact of automation on state agency records keeping practices. In addition, changes in rules for access, computer-based technologies, pressures to maintain routine administration in the face of high turnover in data processing staffs, reduced budgets, and legislation to reduce paperwork pose a threat to the retention of administrative records. This article discusses the implications of the findings and trends, provides examples of data delivery failures, and recommends changes in law and administrative behavior. The authors conclude that the social scientist has a role to play in assisting government agencies in improving access to computerized administrative records.
    • SIPP ACCESS: Information tools improve access to national longitudinal panel surveys

      Robbin, Alice; David, Martin (Reference and Adult Services Division (RASD) of the American Library Association, 1988)
      SIPP ACCESS represents an innovation in providing services for statistical data. A computer-based, integrated information system incorporates both the data and information about the data. SIPP ACCESS systematically links the technologies of laser disk, mainframe computer, microcomputer, and electronic networks and applies relational technology to create great efficiencies and lower the costs of storing, managing, retrieving, and transmitting data and information about complex statistical data collections. This information system has been applied to national longitudinal panel surveys. The article describes the reasons why SIPP ACCESS was created to improve access to these complex surveys and provides examples of tools that facilitate access to information about the contents of these large data sets.