Clinical Trial Data-sharing Policies Among Journals, Funding Agencies, Foundations, and Other Professional Organizations: A Scoping Review – Journal of Clinical Epidemiology

Abstract:  Objectives

To identify the similarities and differences in data-sharing policies for clinical trial data that are endorsed by biomedical journals, funding agencies, and other professional organizations. Additionally, to determine the beliefs, and opinions regarding data-sharing policies for clinical trials discussed in articles published in biomedical journals.


Study Design

Two searches were conducted, a bibliographic search for published articles that present beliefs, opinions, similarities, and differences regarding policies governing the sharing of clinical trial data. The second search analyzed the gray literature (non-peer-reviewed publications) to identify important data-sharing policies in selected biomedical journals, foundations, funding agencies, and other professional organizations.



A total of 471 articles were included after database search and screening, with 45 from the bibliographic search and 426 from the gray literature search. A total of 424 data-sharing policies were included. Fourteen of the 45 published articles from the bibliographic search (31.1%) discussed only advantages specific to data-sharing policies, 27 (27/45; 60%) discussed both advantages and disadvantages, and 4 (4/45; 8.9%) discussed only disadvantages specific. A total of 216 journals (of 270; 80%) specified a data-sharing policy provided by the journal itself. One hundred industry data-sharing policies were included, and 32 (32%) referenced a data-sharing policy on their website. One hundred and thirty-six (42%) organizations (of 327) specified a data-sharing policy.



We found many similarities listed as advantages to data-sharing and fewer disadvantages were discussed within the literature. Additionally, we found a wide variety of commonalities and differences — such as the lack of standardization between policies, and inadequately addressed details regarding the accessibility of research data — that exist in data-sharing policies endorsed by biomedical journals, funding agencies, and other professional organizations. Our study may not include information on all data sharing policies and our data is limited to the entities’ descriptions of each policy.

Why price transparency in research publishing is a positive step | Hindawi

“In 2019, Hindawi took part in the price transparency framework pilot run by Information Power on behalf of cOAlition S. Three years later and the coalition’s new Journal Comparison Service (JCS) is up and running. Hindawi is proud to be one of the publishers that has contributed data to this service. Taking part has helped us focus on the rigour of our own reporting system and has enabled us to give researchers greater choice when choosing a journal by giving more visibility to our services in our new and publicly available journal reports.

Only a few publishers took part in the pilot and the framework remains untested. It’s not yet clear how useful the JCS will be to the institutions who might want to access the service and use the data, or how the JCS will increase transparency about costs as well as pricing across the publishing industry more generally. In part, this is because it’s seen by some to provide an overly simplistic view of publishing. Compartmentalising publishing services into seven or eight different categories  (see page 20 of the JCS guidance for publishers) inevitably constrains the many different and often overlapping services that publishers provide. In addition, limiting the price breakdown of these services into the percentage that each contributes to a journal’s APC also means that the real costs aren’t visible. There are also pragmatic reasons that make it very difficult for some publishers to collect data consistently, especially for those with large portfolios that operate on multiple platforms or have journal-specific workflows. Finally, fully open-access publishers who don’t have an APC business model can’t take part, even if they want to be more transparent. However, we believe the upsides are large. Hindawi has more than 200 journals in our portfolio and the following outlines a few of the ways we, and we hope those who contribute to and access our journals, are benefiting. Our focus is on the ‘Information Power’ framework for the JCS and on the ‘Journal Quality’ information specifically (columns P-Z in the template spreadsheet). This information relates to data on the journal workflow, especially peer review (such as timings and the no of reviewers involved). We know that there is a long way to go to make all publishing services transparent, but we are learning from our participation in the JCS and will continue to explore ways to improve transparency….”

AAU president: ‘It is time we moved from talking to walking’

“He added that, as the celebration focused on the theme ‘Open Science – Bringing Equity to Research and Publishing’, it was appropriate that discussions were aligned to addressing the bigger picture.

“I strongly believe that it is time we moved from talking to walking and to implementing the various recommendations that we come up with – at our departmental, institutional, and continental levels, year after year. The time to act is, indeed, now,” he said….

Oyewole said, contrary to the fear and apprehension that was held by some against open science when it started, he was confident that many have now been convinced that it is the way to conduct research.

“Indeed, we all had first-hand experience about the benefit of open science when, at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, both researchers and publishers in the scholarly sector made efforts to freely make available and in real-time, their COVID-related research, in a bid to help stem the rising tide of infections,” he added….

In addition, he said, the African continental publishing platform, one of the pillars of open science, is open access. The AAU, in collaboration with UbuntuNet Alliance (a regional research education network, or REN) is providing a cloud-based platform to host institutional journals….”

How the OA Switchboard fits into the ecosystem (PART 4/THE FUNDER)

“As an intermediary, the OA Switchboard simplifies the sharing of information between publishers, institutions and funders, thereby reducing the transactional cost for stakeholders, and it provides a safe space for publication metadata. With this, OA Switchboard adds to the tools and data sources currently available to funders.


The two use cases the OA Switchboard supports are also (indirectly) relevant for research funders:

Reporting Made Easy

Matching Publication Costs with Publication Funds…


Sometimes research funders engage directly in the dealings with publishers and covering publication charges, sometimes this is an indirect relationship (e.g. via institutionally managed block grants).


The value of the OA Switchboard for a funder can be one or more of the following:

Direct benefits (e.g. information and data on funded research output)

Indirect benefits (e.g. better implementation of OA policies on a publication-level)

Community benefits (e.g. the ecosystem works better for everyone)…”

Surveying research data-sharing practices in US social sciences: a knowledge infrastructure-inspired conceptual framework | Emerald Insight

Abstract:  Purpose

This study develops a conceptual framework and a series of instruments for capturing researchers’ data-sharing practices in the social sciences, by synergizing the theory of knowledge infrastructure and the theory of remote scientific collaboration.


This paper triangulates the results of three studies of data sharing across the social sciences, with 144 participants in total, and classifies the confusion, “frictions” and opportunities arising from such sharing into four overarching dimensions: data characteristics, technological infrastructure, research culture and individual drivers.


Based on the sample, the findings suggest that the majority of faculty and students in social science research do not share their data because many of them are unaware of the benefits and methods of doing so. Additional findings regarding social scientists’ data-sharing behaviors include: (1) those who do share qualitative data in data repositories are more likely to share their research tools than their raw data; and (2) perceived technical support and extrinsic motivation are both strong predictors of qualitative data sharing (a previously underresearched subtype of social science data sharing).


The study confirms the previously hypothesized nature of “friction” in qualitative data sharing in the social sciences, arising chiefly from the time and labor intensiveness of ensuring data privacy.

Attitudes, behaviours and experiences of authors of COVID-19 preprints

Abstract:  The COVID-19 pandemic caused a rise in preprinting, apparently triggered by the need for open and rapid dissemination of research outputs. We surveyed authors of COVID-19 preprints to learn about their experience of preprinting as well as publishing in a peer-reviewed journal. A key aim was to consider preprints in terms of their effectiveness for authors to receive feedback on their work. We also aimed to compare the impact of feedback on preprints with the impact of comments of editors and reviewers on papers submitted to journals. We observed a high rate of new adopters of preprinting who reported positive intentions regarding preprinting their future work. This allows us to posit that the boost in preprinting may have a structural effect that will last after the pandemic. We also saw a high rate of feedback on preprints but mainly through “closed” channels – directly to the authors. This means that preprinting was a useful way to receive feedback on research, but the value of feedback could be increased further by facilitating and promoting “open” channels for preprint feedback. At the same time, almost a quarter of the preprints that received feedback received comments resembling journal peer review. This shows the potential of preprint feedback to provide valuable detailed comments on research. However, journal peer review resulted in a higher rate of major changes in the papers surveyed, suggesting that the journal peer review process has significant added value compared to preprint feedback.


Open Access Research Outputs Receive More Diverse Citations | Zenodo

Huang, Chun-Kai (Karl), Neylon, Cameron, Montgomery, Lucy, Handcock, Rebecca N., & Wilson, Katie. (2022). Open Access Research Outputs Receive More Diverse Citations (Version 1). Zenodo.

The goal of open access is to allow more people to read and use research outputs. An observed association between highly cited research outputs and open access has been claimed as evidence of increased usage of the research, but this remains controversial. A higher citation count also does not necessarily imply wider usage such as citations by authors from more places. A knowledge gap exists in our understanding of who gets to use open access research outputs and where users are located. Here we address this gap by examining the association between an output’s open access status and the diversity of research outputs that cite it. By analysing large-scale bibliographic data from 2010 to 2019, we found a robust association between open access and increased diversity of citation sources by institutions, countries, subregions, regions, and fields of research, across outputs with both high and medium-low citation counts. Open access through disciplinary or institutional repositories showed a stronger effect than open access via publisher platforms. This study adds a new perspective to our understanding of how citations can be used to explore the effects of open access. It also provides new evidence at global scale of the benefits of open access as a mechanism for widening the use of research and increasing the diversity of the communities that benefit from it.


The relationship between open access publishing and referencing

“49.9% of papers published in 2019 and 2020 are currently available as OA and 51.3% of references from all papers published during those two years are to papers that are currently available as OA. These two percentages are more similar than the percentage of the papers published between 2010 and 2020 that are OA (i.e., 43.3%), suggesting that the OA percentage of the references of papers is not simply a reflection of the access status of the available papers. When we investigate by OA access type, we observe a similar pattern. The exception is gold OA, with a difference of 9.2 percentage points as opposed to 11.9 percentage points. The results suggest that references in recent papers are more open than one would expect, given OA publication practices in the last decade and that they are more open that the publications in which they appear. This demonstrates that the use of OA exceeds the production of it.”

Preprints in Chemistry: a Research Team’s Journey** – Ciriminna – ChemistryOpen – Wiley Online Library

Abstract:  The benefits of publishing research papers first in preprint form are substantial and long-lasting also in chemistry. Recounting the outcomes of our team’s nearly six-year journey through preprint publishing, we show evidence that preprinting research substantially benefits both early career and senior researchers in today’s highly interdisciplinary chemical research. These findings are of general value, as shown by analyzing the case of four more research teams based in economically developed and developing countries.


Hepatitis of unknown origin in children: Why and how to create an open access database – ScienceDirect

Abstract:  During the early stages of an epidemic, obtaining reliable data is a challenge, especially on a global scale. The COVID-19 pandemic has underlined the importance of having “open data” (i.e., data which are made accessible and available in a standardized machine-readable format and under a license that allows it to be re-used and reshared) to inform health policy decisions and improve clinical trials. The main goal of our work is to provide effective, timely and comprehensive data to investigate this emerging virus, i.e., the acute hepatitis of unknown origin in children. These data can be used: 1) to conduct real-time situation analysis, and early and timely diagnosis for effective containment; 2) to facilitate coordination and collaboration between national and local governments; 3) to inform citizens on the spread of the disease in the world; and 4) to support governments in the future prevention decisions.


Readership boost for monographs after British Academy switches to Open Access | The British Academy

“The British Academy has published its first Open Access monograph as part of efforts to widen the reach of the scholarship it funds….

The British Academy Monographs series has been published since 1998 in partnership with Oxford University Press. It provides an opportunity for Academy-supported early career researchers to produce substantial contributions to scholarship. The Academy has published an Open Access Journal since 2013 but this is the first time it has done so for its monographs….”

Early sharing not the only driver for preprint use | Research Information

“But what is interesting, is that while early sharing came out as important for authors, it is not their only driving motivator when using and selecting such services and adopting more open research practices. Authors are looking for more integrated services and want those platforms to offer multiple features that not only enhance the sharing, development and discoverability of their work, but also enable them to track and monitor its progress:   

Transparency was the top feature for authors when selecting an integrated preprint service:

71 per cent of authors said that greater transparency of the peer review process at journals was useful. Through its integration with peer review, In Review enables authors to see specific details of peer review and track their article, providing a high level of transparency into an often ‘hidden’ process.

50 per cent of authors said that the more transparent the service was, the more they felt it was credible, as it enabled greater accountability for the journal

Integrated early sharing – authors surveyed stated that ease of use (69 per cent) and being able to share their manuscript as a preprint at the same time as submitting it to a journal (BMC/ Springer journals) (83 per cent) had an impact on where they choose to take their work. We also learnt that this type of integrated solution is attractive for researchers in LMICs and early career researchers….”