This paper develops and tests a lifecycle model for the preservation of research data by investigating the research practices of scientists. This research is based on a mixed-method approach. An initial study was conducted using case study analytical techniques; insights from these case studies were combined with grounded theory in order to develop a novel model of the Digital Research Data Lifecycle. A broad-based quantitative survey was then constructed to test and extend the components of the model. The major contribution of these research initiatives are the creation of the Digital Research Data Lifecycle, a data lifecycle that provides a generalized model of the research process to better describe and explain both the antecedents and barriers to preservation. The antecedents and barriers to preservation are data management, contextual metadata, file formats, and preservation technologies. The availability of data management support and preservation technologies, the ability to create and manage contextual metadata, and the choices of file formats all significantly effect the preservability of research data.
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