Publishing research data involves making the data gathered as part of a research project available to the public, often accompanying published research (such as a research article in an academic journal).
In addition, several peer-reviewed article submission types or entire journals are devoted solely to the description and publication of datasets -- examples include the Data Notes in BMC Research Notes, the journals Earth System Science Data, Scientific Data, the Journal of Open Archaeology Data, and Data in Brief. The Web of Science database also gives an option to search for 'Data Papers' as a document type across all indexed publications.
To publish your data, make sure to:
- include sufficient documentation by creating metadata
- deposit it in a recognized open data repository, and
- apply an appropriate license to it.
Radar: the SFU research data repository
Radar is Simon Fraser University's research data repository, containing data collections created by SFU researchers. Radar supports data curation activities including long term archiving and access.
As is typical for most data repositories, there is no rights transfer of any kind involved in depositing data with SFU Library. You retain full ownership of your dataset and can request to have it removed from our repository at any time you want.
For more information about Radar, see these frequently asked questions.
Other recognized and trusted data repositories
Depending on the convention for your discipline, you may want to deposit your data in a discipline-specific repository. Most granting agency requirements stipulate the use of an openly accessible data repository, so make sure you use one that satisfies the policy requirements.
The re3data.org registry from DataCite provides searchable discovery and access to discipline-specific data repositories, enabling researchers to identify platforms for data curation and access that best meets the needs of their area of study.
Other well-regarded and recognized data repositories include:
Licensing research data
When you publish your research data online, it is important to select an appropriate license for its use. The Copyright Office at SFU Library provides guidance on dataset copyright and licensing using Creative Commons tools. In addition, the following resources provide other options.
Open Data Commons Licenses
Discussion of open data commons licenses.
A guide to copyright - Government of Canada
A Canadian-specific guide to copyright law.
Research Data Rights Management Guide - Australian Research Data Commons
Information about data rights information and licenses.