Jul 20, 2015

Study: Biomedical data sharing and reuse

A recent publication in PLoS ONE "Biomedical Data Sharing and Reuse: Attitudes and Practices of Clinical and Scientific Research Staff" surveyed the Intramural Research Program at the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) with regard to data management, data sharing, and data re-use.  The authors received 190 responses and analyzed 135 (scientific and clinical staff). Below are the highlights from their findings:

  • ~60% of respondents rated relevance of data re-use as high, while ~15% rated it as low

  • ~25% rated their expertise in re-using data as high, while ~45% rated it as low

  • ~61% reported that they had never uploaded a dataset into a repository, while ~71% said they had shared data directly with another researcher

  • `30%  indicated that it took them more than 10 hours to prepare data for sharing

  • Only 20 respondents provided reasons for not sharing data and their reasons were pretty scattered (see image below):


Image from the study (t016), responses to "...the reason(s) for not sharing your data"

The data from this study is available on Figshare, but it is not the full survey dataset, it's a subset to support the results of this publication. And for some reason it doesn't contain free text responses to the non-sharing question. It's always informative to see what people say beyond the provided standard categories (that is usually the most interesting story in my mind). Perhaps, there were no free text responses.

Citation: Federer LM, Lu Y-L, Joubert DJ, Welsh J, Brandys B (2015) Biomedical Data Sharing and Reuse: Attitudes and Practices of Clinical and Scientific Research Staff. PLoS ONE 10(6): e0129506. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0129506