Guest Post — Empowering Education Research: The POWER of Collaboration and Open Science

In education research, collaboration and knowledge sharing are paramount. However, for researchers who identify as women and non-binary in the field, access to resources and support can often be limited. As a response, POWER (Providing Opportunities for Women in Education Research) was created with the purpose of connecting, supporting, and advocating for women and under-represented gender groups through initiatives such as a listserv for sharing opportunities, a searchable database of experts in the field, and support for the development of specialized hubs.

One of those hubs, Issues in Data Management in Education Research, was established in January 2022 by Crystal Lewis as a response to the need for more data management support in the education research community. With the help of co-organizers, COS Ambassador Gizem Solmaz-Ratzlaff, Rebekah Jacob, and Callie Little, the Hub has become a thriving community with over 50 members gathering monthly to discuss and learn about a variety of data management topics in order to advance their skills and careers. By leveraging the principles of open science, the Hub strives to foster inclusivity and innovation. In a recent member survey, respondents reported that membership in the Hub helped them expand their network (82%), learn new data management practices (82%), and learn about new resources or opportunities (100%). 

The POWER Data Management Hub engages in a range of activities aiming to address challenges for education researchers. Bi-monthly meetups serve as informal gatherings, providing a welcoming space for members to pose questions, engage in discussions, and seek feedback on data management practices. These sessions not only foster a sense of community but also cultivate a culture of continuous learning and support. Complementing these meetups are topical presentations where Hub members and experts in the field share insights and best practices in data management. These one-hour sessions delve into topics ranging from data organization techniques to ethical considerations in research data sharing. To provide support between meetups, the Hub also hosts a Slack workspace where members can ask the community for data management related feedback at any time.

At its core, this Hub serves as a platform for peer-to-peer learning, where members collectively navigate the intricacies of data management within educational research. However, it also serves to provide resources to the larger education research community as well. Central to the mission of the POWER Data Management Hub is the utilization of Open Science Framework (OSF) as a conduit for sharing materials for members and the larger community. By utilizing a public OSF project, the Hub has been able to greatly expand the reach of the group by having a landing page to share information about the Hub, as well as share resources such as slides from speaker presentations.


Members of this group have individually and collectively created a variety of data management learning materials as well. Crystal Lewis has written an open access book titled Data Management in Large-Scale Education Research, enabling researchers and research staff to enhance their data management practices and better contribute to the advancement of education research. Several other members have also created openly available materials on various data management topics such as data capture and data sharing, allowing investigators around the world to have valuable resources at their fingertips. Other members, including Jessica Logan and Sara Hart, have even received funding to provide training in data management and data sharing for researchers. Links to these resources, and more, are also available on the Hub’s OSF page.

By creating and sharing these materials and opportunities, members endeavor to create a more inclusive and equitable research landscape, where diverse voices are heard, valued, and accessible. In essence, the POWER Issues in Data Management in Education Research Hub exemplifies the transformative potential of open science in fostering collaboration, inclusivity, and innovation. By harnessing the principles of transparency, accessibility, and community-driven knowledge sharing, the Hub not only empowers members but also paves the way for a more vibrant and impactful education research ecosystem.

If you're an education or human development researcher interested in driving inclusivity and innovation, the co-organizers welcome you to be a part of this vibrant community by joining the POWER movement and the Data Management Hub!

To further support the community, Crystal Lewis will be hosting a webinar titled Data Management in Large-Scale Education Research on July 23 at 12:30 pm ET, where she will discuss her book and share valuable insights for both newcomers and experienced data managers.

OSKB July Webinar-1
If you're interested, sign up and save it to your calendar!

About the author

Gizem Solmaz-Ratzlaff ( is a doctoral candidate in mathematics education in the School of Teacher Education at Florida State University and serves as a Center for Open Science Ambassador.

Crystal Lewis ( is a freelance data management consultant, specifically focusing on helping researchers in the field of education navigate data management and sharing needs for their projects.

Rebekah Jacob ( is a Data and Methods Strategist for the Prevention Research Center at Washington University in St. Louis. She conducts public health and implementation science research.

Callie Little ( is Research Faculty in the Quantitative Methodology and Innovative Division of the Florida Center for Reading Research. 

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