Open research data: preparations for a national strategy

Science, the economy and society at large need open access to research data. The SERI, swissuniversities, the SNSF as well as ETH and EPFL have agreed to introduce a national strategy on open research data in 2021.

How should researchers prepare, store and make data available to multiple users? The planned strategy will outline a shared vision and common goals. This is expected to lay the foundation for an ambitious long-term policy on open research data (ORD) in line with European and international developments. The national ORD strategy will complement the national open access strategy, which was published in 2017 aiming to ensure accessibility to all scientific publications.

The ORD strategy will be drawn up in the course of 2020 and is expected to take effect in 2021. At the same time, infrastructures and practices currently in place as well as the needs of higher education institutions will be analysed. The strategy and the analysis will form the basis for an action plan and an implementation programme.

Bringing together all academic stakeholders

The Open Science Delegation of swissuniversities will be responsible for conducting the initiative. The delegation consists of representatives of all institutions that have signed the agreement, including the SNSF. Also represented will be the universities, universities of applied sciences, universities of teacher education as well as academic libraries and IT departments of higher education institutions.

Requirement for SNSF-funded projects

The SNSF introduced an ORD requirement in October 2017. As part of their funding applications, all researchers applying for SNSF funding must submit a data management plan. They are expected to make their data publically accessible if there are no obstructing legal or ethical issues. The SNSF covers the cost of preparing and uploading the data to an online data repository.