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Openness: Open Data

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What is Open Data?

In 2013, Dan Lipinski said:

We must, of course, respect issues of privacy and intellectual property.  But the more data are open, the faster we will validate new theories and overturn old ones, and the more efficiently we will transform new discoveries into innovations that will create jobs and make us healthier and more prosperous.  The movement toward open data is not primarily about scientific integrity, it’s mostly about speeding up the process of scientific discovery and innovation.

The Open Data movement is focused on going beyond making scholarly articles open and also asking scholars and researchers to sare their data and computation/ statistical methods. Many believe that making data transparent and open will reduce errors, increase scientific progress, and make the peer review system more rigorous. 

Understand Funder Mandates

The United States government has taken an interest in Open Data. In 2013, President Obama released an executive order to make government data open and machine-readable. 

This movement has started to reach several government funding agencies as well as many private funders. Thus, scholars have felt the repercussions of the open data movement in two ways:

1) Being required to make their data and/or scholarship open if they get funding from a specific agency (ex. the NIH requires the articles it funds to be made accessible in PubMed Central)

2) Data management plans must be submitted with grant applications in order to receive funding. These often require some explanation of how the data will be maintained and made accessible to tax payers or other communities. 

If you're attempting to submit a Data Management Plan (DMP) or need help finding a repository to make your data open, please set up a consultation. We can help you find resources to verify that you're completing all of the requirements for your DMP. 

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