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Research Data Services at UK: Share

Resources and information to help you get started with data management, data preservation, and data sharing


SHARE On this page, you'll find information on how to facilitate its discovery of your data to other interested usersWhile you can share your data informally by emailing it to requestors or posting it to a website, informal methods of sharing make it difficult for people to find your data and access it in the long-term.  Additionally, many funders are requiring data sharing plans; persistent locations for your data will make your plan stronger. To request assistance in locating an appropriate home for your data please contact us.

Why share your data?

There are a number of benefits to sharing the data associated with your research.

1. Increases citations of published research

2. Increases research efficiency by avoiding duplication of effort

3. Promotes scholarly rigor by making methods, protocols, & data more readily available for peer  review & scrutiny

4. Enhances visibility and scope for engagement, including 'citizen science' and public engagement

5. Enables new research through the re-use of data and supports the aggregation and re-analysis of data from a wide range of sources

6. Enhances collaboration and community-building across disciplinary, institutional, national boundaries

7. Increases the economic and social impact of research, innovation in business and public services, and the return on public investment in research

When should data be shared?

Community standards and funder mandates for data sharing vary by discipline and data type, but here are a few general observations.

  • Some funding agencies provide a specific time period for when they expect data to be shared
  • Many funding agencies allow for embargo periods for political/commercial/patent reasons, but these cases must be explained in the grant's data management plan.

Here are a few funding agency-specific data sharing policies:

  • National Institutes of Health (NIH)
    • No later than the acceptance for publication of main findings from the final data set
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
    • 2 years after data collection
  • National Science Foundation (NSF), Earth Sciences Division
    • 2 years after data collection
  • National Science Foundation (NSF), Engineering Directorate
    • 3 years after the end of a project or immediately following a publication, whichever comes first



UKnowledge captures, stores, organizes, and provides open and stable worldwide access to UK's intellectual capital. It facilitates reuse of deposited materials to the extent warranted by copyright law or by the licensing terms of the concerned material. Members of UK's academic community are encouraged to contribute their scholarship to UKnowledge.

How can data be shared?

Below are the principal ways in which researchers share their data along with a list of benefits and drawbacks for each.

Method Benefit(s) Drawback(s)
Project Website
  • Easily accessible
  • Broad dissemination
  • Requires maintenance
  • No access control
  • No unique identifier
Journal or Data Paper
  • Associated with publication
  • Shared with peers
  • Requires an article
  • Access may be behind a paywall
Available Upon Request
  • Retain control
  • Limited access
  • Time intensive
  • May not be deemed acceptable by funder
  • Institutional Repository
  • Open Access
  • Unique identifiers
  • No ongoing maintenance
  • System allows administrators to implement restrictions on access
  • Limited by size of data
Discipline-Specific Repository
  • Open Access in some cases
  • Shared with peers
  • Some repositories offer nuanced access controls that are sensitive to specific needs
  • No ongoing maintenance
  • Some sites do not offer Open Access
  • Access control varies by repository -- controls and system capabilities are inconsistent across systems

DOI's for Datasets: Unique identifiers for helping researchers find your data

UK Libraries is a member of DataCite and we register DOIs through DataCite for datasets deposited in UKnowledge DataCite Research enables keyword search for datasets (with accompanying information) hosted in repositories worldwide. This mechanism helps other researchers find your research data.

For more information about Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs), please visit our DOI page

For a additional data repositories, please visit our Find page for a more comprehensive list.