Sharing Data

Sharing data can be accomplished simply by sending a file to a colleague, or placing it in an accessible cloud storage drive.

Publishing Your Data

Publishing research data entails a more formal process that has several added benefits:

  • becomes part of the scholarly record
  • establishes your prior work
  • enables discovery of your work
  • can be cited (assuming the data repository provides a unique identifier for the data)
  • can be linked to your publication(s)

Restricting Access

If data cannot be made openly accessible, due to constraints arising from sensitive data concerns, or licensing considerations, several other avenues also enable data sharing.

The UI Division of Sponsored Programs provides support for Data Use Agreements, which are “contractual documents used for the transfer of non-public data that is subject to some restriction on its use.”

Some data centers and repositories may offer services through which access to certain data is restricted, and requires an approved application for access. These options make the metadata available, so others can discover information about the dataset, and cite it later if they use it. Examples of this are restricted access data in ICPSR for social science data, and Vivli for clinical trial data.

Finally, some repositories allow an embargo to be placed on data for a limited amount of time, to preserve and hold the data while a publication is in review. Embargoes are usually for a limited amount of time, between 1 and 2 years, after which the data is publicly available.

How to share your data

You can share your data by depositing in a repository. .

  • IRO: Iowa Research Online is a service of the University of Iowa Libraries dedicated to preserving and providing open access to the research and creative scholarship of the University. University of Iowa faculty, students, and staff can deposit their data in this repository.
  • Open access repositories. Visit the A-Z Databases, re3data, and Open Access Directory to search for repositories suitable for your field or subject area.