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Data Commons Naming Conventions

CyVerse Curated Data datasets are searchable and discoverable based on their metadata. While the dataset itself can have any name chosen by the creator (within reason), the folder that contains the dataset must follow the naming practices described on this page.

General guidelines

  • Folder names must be unique. In the case of a conflict with an existing dataset, your subject can be modified slightly.
  • No invalid characters: Be sure there are no spaces or special characters in the folder name; for more information, see Using Special Characters in the DE
  • Use underscores between each segment.




  • The Creator entry should be the same as entered in the Creator field of the DOI request - DataCite Metadata request form.
  • The Creator is the lead author, the senior author, or the organization with the primary responsibility for the dataset.

Start the field (the creator’s name) with a capital letter.


  • If two co-creators, okay to use both names, separated by an underscore or using camel case.
  • If three or more co-creators, select only one name or use a consortium name. Other contributors should be acknowledged in the metadata (as creators or contributors), which will display on the dataset landing page.


  • Very briefly describes what the dataset is about.
  • If the subject is more than one word, use either camel case (example: camelCase) or underscores (example: underscore_between_words) to separate the words.
  • If another folder has the exact same name, you may modify the subject slightly to maintain uniqueness.


  • Either just the year, or the month and year, in which the dataset was created.
  • Month and year should be used only if there is likely to be more than one dataset with the same creator and subject within the same year.
  • Month must be a three-letter abbreviation: Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Nov, Dec


Correct examples

The following will pass the folder name validation check:

  • Walls_yam_variation_2015
  • DeBarry_yamGenomicVariation_2016
  • Esteva_yam_variation_Mar2016
  • Esteva_Walls_yam_genomic_variation_Jun2016
  • YamConsortium_Dioscorea_variation_Nov2017

Counter examples


The following will fail the folder name validation check:

  • WallsYamVariation_2016 (Missing underscore between the creator and the subject)
  • Esteva_yam_variation_June2016 (Month should be three letters: Jun)
  • YamConsortium_Nov2017 (No subject)
  • Walls_yam_variation_2016#1 (Contains a special character)
  • Walls YamVariation 2020 (Contains spaces)