Current Practice:

The Roper Center has implemented a version control protocol based at the study level. All studies upon arrival at the Roper Center are assigned a baseline level version designation and moved into archival storage. A new incremental version number will be assigned to a study when an existing file has been modified and/or a new file is created for that study during a process event. These processing events may include file format migration, digitization of analog materials, minor or major corrections, and/or any value-added file modifications. Each study level version is stored in archival storage for long-term preservation.

The Roper Center provides web access only to the most recent study version and its associated files through RoperExpress. The version number for each study is available on the study abstract page and in the citation.

For example:

Pew Research Center for the People & the Press. Pew Research Center Poll: January 2014 Political Survey, Jan, 2014 [dataset]. USPEW2014-01POL, Version 2. Princeton Survey Research Associates International [producer]. Storrs, CT. Roper Center for Public Opinion Research, RoperExpress [distributor], accessed Feb-2-2015.

Looking to the Future:

The Roper Center is currently investigating the use of file level version control strategies. These strategies will allow for more intensive tracking of file modifications and the ability to better codify these changes. The ideal strategy will allow for easier processing for our archival staff and more openness with our user community.

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DDI Working Paper Series — Best Practices, No. 8:
http://www.ddialliance.org/sites/default/files/bp/DDIBestPractices_VersioningAndPublication.doc.pdf