Open Access to Data: An Ideal Professed but not Practised

Posted: November 7th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Data Sharing, EDaWaX | Tags: , | Comments Off on Open Access to Data: An Ideal Professed but not Practised

300_ Emilio Quintana_share-computer-key-260_flickr_comThe two economists Patrick Andreoli-Versbach and Frank Mueller-Langer (both from the Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition in Munich) have published a new paper in Research Policy in which they analyse the data-sharing behaviour of 488 randomly selected empirical researchers.*

Andreoli-Versbach and Mueller-Langer (2014) provide evidence that most researchers in economics and management do not share their data voluntarily. The authors derive testable hypotheses based on the theoretical literature on information-sharing and relate data-sharing to observable characteristics of researchers. They find empirical support for the hypotheses that voluntary data-sharing significantly increases with

(a) academic tenure,

(b) the quality of researchers,

(c) the share of published articles subject to a mandatory data-disclosure policy of journals, and

(d) personal attitudes towards “open science” principles.

On the basis of their empirical evidence, the authors discuss a set of policy recommendations. Andreoli-Versbach and Mueller-Langer (2014, p. 1631) conclude:

As researchers demand data-sharing but only very few researchers that have open science attitudes are willing to provide it, the choice to share or not to share should not be left to the discretion of individual researchers, but rather needs institutional response (Dasgupta and David, 1994). To ensure and spur progress in data-sharing, journals and universities should continue to take the lead.



Andreoli-Versbach, Patrick and Frank Mueller-Langer (2014). Open Access to Data: An Ideal Professed but Not Practised. Research Policy, Vol. 43, No. 9, 1621-1633.,

Dasgupta, P., David, P.A., 1994. Toward a New Economics of Science. Research Policy, 23(5), 487-521.


* The work received financial support from the German Research Foundation (DFG) under the European Data Watch Extended Project.

Picture: “share-computer-key-260” by Emilio Quintana on License: CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

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