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<Personnel> defines the point of contact for more information about the data set or the metadata.

  • The contact personnel are defined by the <Role>, which include:
    • Investigator: The person who headed the investigation or experiment that resulted in the acquisition of the data described (i.e., Principal Investigator, Experiment Team Leader)
    • Technical Contact: The person who is knowledgeable about the technical content of the data (quality, processing methods, units, available software for further processing)
    • DIF Author: The person who is responsible for the content of the DIF. If the responsibility shifts from the original author to another person, the DIF Author field should be updated to the new responsible person.

  • <First_Name>, <Middle_Name> and <Last_Name> are the first, middle and last name of the person or organization defined in the <Personnel> field. Initials may be used for the <First_Name> and <Middle_Name>.  Organizational names may be substituted for personal names.
  • <Email> is the email address of the personnel or organization. Note: Authors may use “@” in formatting email addresses, however the “@” symbol will not be displayed to the public to avoid potential spam attacks.
  • <Phone> is the telephone number of the person or organization. Telephone extensions are allowed. If not in the U.S. or Canada, use the two-digit country code followed by the phone number. Otherwise, use the 10-digit phone number including area code. For example: <Phone>+44 5555 555555</Phone> or <Phone>301-555-5555</Phone>
  • <FAX> is the FAX number of the person or organization. The same rules for <Phone> apply to FAX numbers.
  • <Contact Address> contain the address information of the person or organization. It consists of:
    • <Address> is the organization name, department, mail stop, street address, etc. of the person or organization.
    • <City> is the city or town of the person or organization.
    • <Province or State> is the province (particularly Canadian provinces, region or state (particularly in the United States).
    • <Postal Code> is the postal code of the person or organization.
    • <Country> is the country of the person or organization.

     <Role>Personnel Role Valid</Role>
     <First_Name>Text up to 80 characters</First_Name>
     <Middle_Name>Text up to 80 characters</Middle_Name>
     <Last_Name>Text up to 80 characters</Last_Name>
     <Email>Text up to 80 characters of the form
     <Phone>Text up to 80 characters of the form “xxx-xxx-xxxx”. Outside of  the US and Canada, the country code should be added (+xx-xxx-xxxx)</Phone>
     <Fax>Text up to 80 characters (see syntax for <Phone>)</Fax>
        <Address>Text up to 80 characters</Address>
        <City>Text up to 80 characters</City>
        <Province_or_State>Text up to 80 characters</Province_or_State>
        <Postal_Code>Text up to 80 characters</Postal_Code>
        <Country>Text up to 80 characters</Country>

  • Characters may be selected from the UTF-8 character set.
  • The <Personnel> field is highly recommended and may be repeated.
  • The <Role> field is required and must be selected from the Personnel Role keyword list (see definitions above).  The <Role> may be repeated. A person may have more than one role, such as Investigator and DIF Author.
  • The <First_Name> and <Middle_Name> of the personnel are optional. If the <Personnel> field is populated, the <Last_Name> is required. Names may be personal names or organizational names.
  • The  <Email>, <Phone> and <Fax> fields are optional and may be repeated.
  • The <Address> field may contain multiple lines and can be repeated as often as necessary.
  • <City>, <Province_Or_State>, <Postal_Code> and <Country> are not repeatable.
  • <Phone> and <Fax> are optional and may be repeated.
  • <Country> is optional and may not be repeated. <Country> should always be included in the address.
  • Note: If personnel retire, particularly investigators, it is desirable to keep their full name, delete their <Phone>, <Email> and <Fax> number, or in the <Address> subfield, state that they are retired or deceased, keeping the name of their affiliation.

Example of personnel with a role of DIF Author
    <Role>DIF AUTHOR</Role>
      <Address>Goddard Earth Sciences Data and Information Services Center</Address>
      <Address>Code 610.2</Address>
      <Address>NASA Goddard Space Flight Center</Address>

Example of personnel with role of Investigator and from non-US country.
    <Phone>+44 5555 555555</Phone>
    <Fax>+44 2222 222222</Fax>
      <Address>Climatic Research Unit</Address>
      <Address>University of East Anglia</Address>
      <Postal_Code>NR4 7TJ</Postal_Code>
      <Country>United Kingdom</Country>

Example of organizational personnel with a role of Technical Contact

    <Role>Technical Contact</Role>
      <Address>World Data Center for Paleoclimatology</Address>
      <Address>NOAA/NCDC Code E/GCx3</Address>
      <Address>325 Broadway</Address>
      <Province or State>CO</Province or State>


This document should be cited as:
Directory Interchange Format (DIF) Writer's Guide, 2018.
Global Change Master Directory.
National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

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