Report Open Access
The study was jointly commissioned by the SNSF and swissuniversities in 2018.
In light of the SNSF’s decision to make sharing data from funded projects mandatory in 2016, this study examined the sharing and reuse behaviour of researchers in the Swiss community in 2018. Since it was to be conducted across all disciplines throughout Switzerland, the range of the questions was very broadly designed and questions from earlier international studies were used for comparability. Additionally, a second questionnaire addressed international repositories in order to learn about their perspectives and plans for future development. The results were analyzed using statistical methods and can be regarded as representative.
Generally, the motivation and concerns for sharing data and reuse in the Swiss community are not different from other scientific communities. Differences in sharing and reuse behaviour are found according to the disciplines of the researchers, which were assessed using the bepress taxonomy. Different methods used by the researchers did not result in different sharing behaviour, but in where the data was shared. While the sharing is done equally in general repositories and smaller disciplinary repositories, of which a great number exist, the researchers prefer to use disciplinary repositories if they want to reuse data.
Overall, about a third of the Swiss research community share data in repositories. The main reason for not sharing was researchers’ plans to publish their results first. Also, many participants claimed to have a different concept of data; while we tried to define terms carefully, apparently there is a need for more discipline-specific information and discussion on the topic. Future requirements for services from the Swiss community are not yet met by the international repositories' plans. Several recommendations on the future SNSF governance on data sharing are proposed to conclude the study.
Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)
Open Research Data Group
Program "Scientific Information"