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Research Guides

Data Management Guide: Sharing, Storage, & Preservation

Guide of resources related to the many aspects of research data management. Data management encompasses the processes surrounding collecting, organizing, describing, sharing, and preserving data.


Why should you share your data?


  • Accelerates research and provides greater exposure to data
  • Increases possibility of future research collaborations
  • Potentially increases citation of source papers (Piwowar, 2007)
  • Increases return on research investment by allowing continued re-use of data (funding agencies value this)
  • Many funding agencies (see SPARC list) and journals (e.g. NatureScience) are now implementing data sharing requirements
  • Encourages scientific enquiry and debate



Questions to consider before sharing your data:



  • How much and which aspects of your data will you share?  (Raw data? Analyzed?  Both?)
  • Are there privacy or security issues with your data and how will they be resolved? (Anonymization? Informed consent? Controlled access?)
  • When will you make the data available? (As soon as it's collected? Upon project completion? After publication?)
  • With whom will you share your data? (Your department? Your institution? Others in your field? Everyone?)



How can you share your data?



  • Deposit in a subject-specific or institutional repository
  • Submit as supplementary information with an article to be published in a journal
  • Make available on a website
  • Make available on departmental servers
  • Informal peer-to-peer sharing via email or removable media
  • Use an ORCiD ID to create a profile of all your publications including datasets.
  • Create a persistent identifier for a long-lasting reference



See the data storage options available to University of Washington affiliates under "Storing" on this page. Many of the services also provide options for easy sharing of data.



Proper preservation of the data ensures the integrity of the data remains intact for future use and easy access. Whether or not you share your research data, the University of Washington has requirements for the preservation of research data which are laid out in Grants Information Memorandum 37. For specific retention requirements for research data, see General Schedule 7: Research and Grant/Contract Records.


Where should you store your data?

There are a number of options to choose from when deciding where to store your data. Deciding which option is best for you may require some thought. It is recommended that your data be saved and stored using a minimum of two different options.

Below are options for storage available to UW affiliates:


If you have questions about data sharing, storage, or preservation please contact the Data Services Team or use the "Ask Us" link at the top of the page.