The European University Association (EUA) has published its Open Access Survey Report 2016-2017. The Open Access Survey tracks universities’ progress towards open access by looking at the degree to which they have implemented institutional policies and practices in the field. For the first time, the 2016-2017 survey focused on research data management and open access to research data, in addition to open access to research publications.
Main Outcomes Regarding Research data Management and Open Access to Research Data
- Six out of ten institutions had no research data management guidelines in place ;
- Seven out of ten institutions had no open access to research data guidelines in place ;
- Institutions that lacked research data management and open access to research data guidelines, indicated that this was mainly due to the absence of national guidelines and the novelty of the topic :
- Universities underlined the need for specific human and technical resources (skilled and specialist staff), data repositories, appropriate e-infrastructure and software to streamline research data management ;
- To improve open access to research data, universities indicated the need for clear university policies, including provisions for different scientific fields, and for sustainable funding outlooks to develop human resources and technical infrastructure ;
- Universities observed that the specific skills needed for research data management and open access to research data must span diverse areas, including legal, data and technical aspects. Institutional coordination is also critical, as relevant skills are typically scattered across different units, departments and staff members ;
- Universities called for policies on research data management and open access to research data at national and European levels, with an emphasis on quality assurance and legal matters. Best practice exchange was also considered critical at both national and European levels.
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