Do you need to publish your research data? The new trend of data journals (part 1)

All researchers are familiar with the idea that publishing articles is an important part of advancing their careers. However, only a few people think about publishing the raw data behind those articles. Research data has been a priority for decades. Others think that raw data is not needed as long as the research method and results are clear. Nevertheless, these ideas are changing.

Various factors, such as the crisis of reproducibility and online access that have made it easier to review and categorize data have led to a new trend toward new ways of exchanging data among scientists and researchers. Although repositories have been around for some time, data journals are now on the rise as a place to publish data. So is data publication a requirement? If yes, do you have to do this in a data journal or a repository? In this article, we will talk about these issues and introduce today’s leading data journals.

What is research data?

What do we mean when we talk about research data? There is no consensus on a definition for it. Simply put, research data refers to the observations and information that a researcher collects during the process of studying a particular topic. When we talk about “research data”, it can mean raw, unprocessed data obtained directly from the laboratory. It can also refer to the data that has been processed and measured or even to the published output. In any case, the data is the actual recorded output used in the research. It can take the form of raw or unprocessed files, software, code, protocols, methods, interview texts, models, or anything else depending on the field of research.

While standard academic articles tend to focus on the major findings and highlight interesting results, they do not generally include all of the research data collected for several reasons. First, researchers tend to collect far more data than they can fit into a short academic article. Second, the general aim of academic articles is to present the research data within a context with respect to a researcher’s conclusions. Raw data, or even somewhat processed data, is often overwhelming and cumbersome to sort through. So what could be the benefits of publishing your data?

Although Standard academic papers tend to focus on the main findings and emphasize interesting results, they generally do not include all the data collected for several reasons. First, researchers generally collect more data than can fit in a short academic paper. Second, the general purpose of academic papers is to present research data in a context according to the results of a researcher. Categorizing raw data or even processed data is often a difficult and tedious task. So what are the benefits of data publication?

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