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Research Data Management

Share your data

Share your data

 

Jim Ottaviani

Why should you share your data?

  • Increase your research impact and citation rate: If you share your research data online and others cite it, you can include these citations with your publications citations, demonstrating an increased impact of your scholarship.
  • Promote collaborations: Other researchers finding your data online may be an avenue to start new or expand existing collaborations
  • Increase transparency and reproducibility of research
  • May be mandated by funding agency or publisher: Data sharing guidelines may vary widely between different funding agencies so check their guidelines very carefully.

Sharing your data publicly (usually online) makes it available for other researchers to re-use. Data sharing is becoming increasingly mandated by institutions, funding agencies and publishers.

How to share your data?

  • Submit as a supplemental file to a publication: Check the journal or publisher's Author Guidelines to see if this is an option.
  • Deposit in a data repository: A data repository makes your data publicly available online. Most data repositories contain data related to a specific discipline but some are discipline agnostic.
  • Publish it in a data journal: Examples of data journals include:
    • Scientific Data (published by Nature)
    • Research Data Journal for the Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Share it on a personal website: This option is not recommended due to the significant time commitment to maintain a personal website.

Best practices for sharing your data

  • Check if your funding agency or publisher has data sharing requirements: They may require that the data is made available for a certain amount of time. They also may require that you use a specific data repository or provide them with a citation that notes where the data was deposited. 
  • Before sharing, check intellectual property rights: Data itself is considered a fact and isn't subject to copyright. But an expression of the data (such as a figure in a publication) could be subject to copyright.
  • Select data to share: You should share the data that supports all parts of your publications, including tables and figures.
  • Apply a license to your data to facilitate re-use: Apply a Creative Commons license of Open Data Commons license to your data. A license will tell other researchers how they can (and can't) re-use your data.
  • Share data around the time of publication: Some funders and publishers require that data is available prior to or at the time of publication.

Preserve your data

Data preservation is a series of managed activities necessary to ensure continued access to your research data as long as necessary.

Deposit in a data repository: A data repository makes your data publicly available online. Most data repositories contain data related to a specific discipline but some are discipline-agnostic.

  • Publish it in a data journal: Examples of data journals include Scientific Data (published by Nature) and Research Data Journal for the Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Share it on a personal website: This option is not recommended due to the significant time commitment to maintain a personal website.
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