Policy ForumData

Time for NIH to lead on data sharing

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Science  20 Mar 2020:
Vol. 367, Issue 6484, pp. 1308-1309
DOI: 10.1126/science.aba4456

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Summary

The U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), the largest global funder of biomedical research, is in the midst of digesting public comments toward finalizing a data sharing policy. Although the draft policy is generally supportive of data sharing (1), it needs strengthening if we are to collectively achieve a long-standing vision of open science built on the principles of findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable (FAIR) (2) data sharing. Relying on investigators to voluntarily share data has not, thus far, led to widespread open science practices (3); thus, we suggest steps that NIH could take to lead on scientific data sharing, with an initial focus on clinical trial data sharing.

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