Science Editor and Publisher

Advanced search

Standardising and Harmonising Research Data Policy in Scholarly Publishing

Full Text:


To address the complexities researchers face during publication, and the potential communitywide benefits of wider adoption of clear data policies, the publisher Springer Nature has developed a standardized, common framework for the research data policies of all its journals. An expert working group was convened to audit and identify common features of research data policies of the journals published by Springer Nature, where policies were present. The group then consulted with approximately 30 editors, covering all research disciplines within the organisation. The group also consulted with academic editors, librarians and funders, which informed development of the framework and the creation of supporting resources. Four types of data policy were defined in recognition that some journals and research communities are more ready than others to adopt strong data policies. As of January 2017 more than 700 journals have adopted a standard policy and this number is growing weekly. To potentially enable standardization and harmonization of data policy across funders, institutions, repositories, societies and other publishers, the policy framework was made available under a Creative Commons license. However, the framework requires wider debate with these stakeholders and an Interest Group within the Research Data Alliance (RDA) has been formed to initiate this process. 

About the Authors

Iain Hrynaszkiewicz
Springer Nature
United Kingdom

A. Birukou
Springer-Verlag GmbH

Mathias Astell
Nature Research
United States

Sowmya Swaminathan
Nature Research
United States

Amye Kenall
Springer Nature
United Kingdom

Varsha Khodiyar
Scientific Data
United Kingdom


1. Meadows A. To share or not to share? That is the (research data) question... The Scholarly Kitchen. Nov. 11, 2014. Available at:

2. Schmidt B., Gemeinholzer B., Treloar A. Open data in global environmental research: The Belmont Forum’s open data survey. PloS One. 2016;11(1):e0146695. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0146695.

3. Hahnel M. Global funders who require data archiving as a condition of grants. Figshare. 2015. DOI: 10.6084/m9.figshare.1281141.v1.

4. Naughton L., Kernohan D. Making sense of journal research data policies. Insights the UKSG Journal. 2016;29(1):84–89. DOI: 10.1629/uksg.284.

5. Piwowar H. A., Vision T. J. Data reuse and the open data citation advantage. PeerJ. 2013;1:e175. DOI: 10.7717/peerj.175.

6. HEFCE, Research Councils UK, Universities UK, Wellcome Trust. Concordat on open research data. 2016. Available at:

7. Hrynaszkiewicz I. Promoting research data sharing at Springer Nature. OfSchemes and Memes [Blog]. 2016. Available at:

8. Announcement: Where are the data? Nature. 2016;537(7619):138–138. DOI: 10.1038/537138a.

9. Over 600 Springer Nature journals commit to new data sharing policies. Available at:


For citations:

Hrynaszkiewicz I., Birukou A., Astell M., Swaminathan S., Kenall A., Khodiyar V. Standardising and Harmonising Research Data Policy in Scholarly Publishing. Science Editor and Publisher. 2018;3(1-2):38-43. (In Russ.)

Views: 756

ISSN 2542-0267 (Print)
ISSN 2541-8122 (Online)