Three Major Reports Released on Open Data Science

Collecting and summarizing these recently issued reports in a single place:

UNESCO’s 2021 Recommendation on Open Science. The meeting of UNESCO’s General Conference throughout most of November this year resulted in a 36 page report outlining common standards for open science signed by 193 countries, forging an international definition of “open science” for the first time, calling for robust governmental, NGO, and educational funding and policy-making in this area, and highlighting the vital importance of open publications and open data to reduce global and societal inequities in all areas of life.

ITHAKA S+R’s December 1st report, Big Data Infrastructure at the Crossroads: Support Needs and Challenges for Universities. The document distills down findings from over 200 interviews with faculty facilitated by librarians from over 20 colleges and universities. Consistent themes emerged of the inherently interdisciplinary and collaborative nature of data management and data analysis, the advantages of international teams, and the lack of consistent coordination and infrastructure (technical and staffing) to support big data planning, wrangling, storage, and ongoing curation. The concluding, detailed list of recommendations for University Research Offices (including IRB processes), Departments, Libraries, Funders, Scholarly Societies, and Vendors are spot on and highly valuable.

Digital Science, Springer Nature, and figshare’s joint November 30th report, 2021 State of Open Data Report. This report stands out as “the largest longitudinal survey of researcher motivations, challenges, perceptions and behaviors toward open data with over 21,000 responses from researchers in 192 different countries over a six year period.” The results show a sharp uptick between 2020 and 2021 over concerns about misuse of data and researchers not receiving appropriate credit or acknowledgement for their work on creating, collecting, and managing data, pointing to the increasing importance of open data/science for research and institutional lag in keeping up with these trends.