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Sharing research data

What is research data?

Research data is the set of data required to validate the results presented in scientific articles. They can be of different natures, for example:

  • datasets created by the researcher,
  • software source codes,
  • sounds,
  • videos,
  • or even images.

Can all data be shared?

Before disseminating them, you must first ensure that you have permission. This is particularly the case for data subject to copyright. For example, data from financial databases cannot be shared without the agreement of the supplier.

Similarly, if they contain personal information, they cannot be shared without being anonymised beforehand.

Why share this data?

Sharing research data is an excellent way of making a researcher's work visible and valuable. Indeed, just like an article, the data can be made available to other researchers. They can reuse it and cite it in their publications. Most research data sharing platforms assign a permalink and DOI to data posted by researchers, making it easier to access.

This approach also allows for a broader base of data to be built upon and for the same dataset to be used in different ways, opening up new opportunities.

How to set up research data sharing?

When a researcher wishes to share research data, it is strongly advised to draw up a Data Management Plan (DMP). This document not only describes the data produced, but also describes how it will be managed from creation upstream of the research to sharing downstream. This file thus makes it possible to organise and anticipate data management.

Like the other elements that make up a research project, the DMP will evolve and may be updated as the project progresses.

What does a DMP look like? How should it be written?

The model of a Data Management Plan (DMP) changes according to the organisations or funders that request it. In order to assist researchers in drafting a DMP, many tools exist to help them draft it according to the requested model.

 

Where to share your data?

There are many platforms:

  • specialised in sharing a specific type of data or targeting a particular discipline,
  • multi-disciplinary, allowing data to be shared regardless of type, format or research area.

To find out more:


For questions about the research data, please contact:

Antoine Haldemann
Research and thesis publication officer