Open Science: data sharing struggling

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 (Image: Pixabay CC0) (Image: Pixabay CC0)

Despite mandatory data sharing policies adopted by some scientific journals, the potential for reuse of these data remains limited. This is the finding of a meta-research on open science undertaken by Dominique Roche, postdoctoral fellow in biology at the University of Neuchâtel.

Open science is a worldwide movement to make scientific research and its data transparent and accessible to all. It has two main objectives. The first is to improve the accessibility of research results as well as their transparency and reproducibility. This is to improve the robustness and credibility of research results and to accelerate scientific discovery through sharing and collaboration among researchers. The second is to promote equity and inclusiveness in research, whether through increased sharing of research resources and results, or by creating tools that are accessible to all.

The lack of participation by scientists stems mainly from the fear of sharing their data, says Dominique Roche. They fear that someone will identify errors in their studies or that others will use their data to publish an article without involving them in the new research.

In the last few years, Switzerland has taken several actions to promote the sharing of research data and increase the openness of science. This represents a real cultural change. The objective of these initiatives is to strengthen the action, transparency and reproducibility of scientific research in a sustainable way.

Dominique Roche holds a PhD in biology and a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Global Fellowship at the Institute of Biology of the University of Neuchâtel. Her research focuses on open data sharing, a specific aspect of open science, in her field of expertise, ecology and evolution. His recent work shows that data sharing policies adopted by some scientific journals have led to an increase in open data but that their potential for reuse and their benefits for science remain limited for the moment.