The QUT Digital Observatory (DO), established in January 2018, aims to enable the understanding of the complex and dynamic digital landscape by providing researchers access to a reliable, scalable state-of-the-art research data infrastructure and the requisite data engineering and data science services.
The DO maintains a state-of-the-art infrastructure for tracking, collecting, and analysing dynamic digital data such as social media data among others. Our ability to manage large sets of continuous and dynamic digital data enables innovative digital media and society research with applications across a range of fields. The DO aims to address the challenge of building a trusted platform that makes it possible to collect data responsibly, ethically, and securely. Accordingly, the DO has secured an ethics approval to operate as a databank and become data custodian to the datasets it collects. The DO is the data custodian of curated and adhoc data collections. Examples of curated collections are the Australian Twittersphere, 2019 Federal Election, and the Covid19 dataset. In addition to providing access to the curated and adhoc datasets, DO capability includes the services of software developers and data scientists to assist researchers in many of their data-related needs so they can focus more on their analysis and research dissemination.