Academic Researchers Need Support and Incentives to Share Data - MethodSpace
ab1630's bookmarks 2018-04-19
"To achieve real “open science” we need to open up all areas of research, including research data. Making data available for other researchers to find, use, reuse, and reproduce will make research more efficient and effective. Members of the newly formed UK Research and Innovation, an independent organisation that brings together the seven Research Councils, Innovate UK and Research England, the Wellcome Trust, and other UK funders have moved early to encourage and require data sharing. Yet researchers in the UK report lower percentages of data sharing than the global average. Policy must be coupled with greater support and education for researchers, and faster, easier routes to sharing data optimally. Incentives and credit for data sharing are also needed. The post can originally be on LSE Impact Blog under the title “We need more carrots: give academic researchers the support and incentives to share data” by Grace Baynes. As a publisher I firmly believe research articles and scholarly books and monographs are important summaries and conclusions of years of work for researchers. However, the real building blocks of discovery are the data they produce. Data sharing brings many benefits to society. According to the Open Data Institute, the value of public sector open data is between 0.4% and 1.5% of an economy’s GDP. An independent report found that the European Bioinformatics Institute returns £1 billion in annual efficiency savings to researchers worldwide. Data archiving can double the publication output of research projects, according to a study of 7,000 National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health-funded research projects in the social sciences. Citation impact of research papers has also been shown to increase by as much as 50% when data are made available. It can help reduce duplication of effort and is a foundation for reproducibility research. Despite all these benefits, in 2017 only about half of research data were shared and a much smaller proportion were shared openly or in ways that maximise discoverability and reuse...."