It’s January 2011– do you know where your data are?
It would be a good idea to know and be ready to deposit your files in a data repository, because this month marks the implementation of the Joint Data Archiving Policy. The policy, endorsed by a consortium of prominent journals and societies, states that journals will require
as a condition for publication, that data supporting the results in the paper should be archived in an appropriate public archive.
The policy can be customized by each journal, and enables both embargoes and editorial discretion to make special exceptions. Blanket exemptions apply to sensitive data such as identifiable human records and endangered species localities.
The journals (and corresponding societies) implementing the policy this month are:
- The American Naturalist (American Society of Naturalists)
- Evolution (Society for the Study of Evolution)
- Evolutionary Applications
- Heredity (The Genetics Society)
- Journal of Evolutionary Biology (European Society for Evolutionary Biology)
- Molecular Biology and Evolution (Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution)
- Molecular Ecology
- Systematic Biology (Society for Systematic Biology)
A sampling of the revised Instructions to Authors includes:
- The American Naturalist: “The American Naturalist requires authors to deposit the data associated with accepted papers in a public archive. For gene sequence data and phylogenetic trees, deposition in GenBank or TreeBASE, respectively, is required. There are many possible archives that may suit a particular data set, including the Dryad repository for ecological and evolutionary biology data (http://datadryad.org). All accession numbers for GenBank, TreeBASE, and Dryad must be included in accepted manuscripts before they go to Production. Any impediments to data sharing should be brought to the attention of the editors at the time of submission.”
- Journal of Evolutionary Biology “The editors and publisher of this journal expect authors to make the data underlying published articles available. An investigator who feels that reasonable requests have not been met by the authors should correspond with the Editor-in-Chief. Authors must use the appropriate database to deposit detailed information supplementing submitted papers, and quote the accession number in their manuscripts.”
- Molecular Ecology: “Data Accessibility: To enable readers to locate archived data from Molecular Ecology papers, as of January 2011 we will require that authors include a ‘Data Accessibility’ section after their references. This should list the data base and respective accession numbers for all data from the manuscript that has been made publicly available…. Please note that this section must be complete prior to the submission of the final version of your manuscript. Papers lacking this section will not be sent to Production.”
At Dryad, we have been working for some time now with editors and publishers at these and other partner journals to support the implementation of this policy. If you submit an article to a “JDAP journal,” you will be invited to simultaneously submit your data to Dryad. This may occur either prior to review or, depending on the journal, at the time your article is accepted. Dryad and the journal communicate behind the scenes to make it as easy as possible for you to deposit your data, and also ensure that a permanent, resolvable, and citable data identifier is published in the final article. That way, in the future, no one need be frightened by the question “do you know where your data are?”
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