Skip to main content

Data Management and Sharing

This guide provides current resources available to the Brown University community for management, long-term storage, and, when appropriate, sharing of research data as required by funders and journals. Contact data_management@brown.edu for assistance.

Data Sharing Repositories Recommended by Journals and Funders

Brown University researchers have several options for depositing and storing data for long-term access and, when appropriate, for public sharing, complying with funder and journal requirements. Depositing, citing and sharing the digital files of protocols, methods and materials, data, code, and documentation help with the critical interpretation and understanding as well as the replication of methods and repeatability/reproducibility of reported research findings. Be sure to contact your funder's program officer and/or journal's editor to ensure you select the appropriate repository. If your journal/funder does not have a required/recommended repository, then consider using one of the national repositories listed below or the Brown Digital Repository (BDR).  Please ensure any sharing of data complies with Brown University's Export ControlsRestricted InformationResearch Privacy, and Patent & Invention Policies.                                                                                                                              

Brown University Dataverse [https://dataverse.harvard.edu/dataverse/brown/] (Faculty and students can self-upload)

Maintained by Harvard University, Dataverse is a generalist and open repository recommended by a growing number of scholarly journals for citing and making publicly available protocols, data, and code, as well as other research products underlying published findings. Faculty and students can self-deposit in Brown's Dataverse within Harvard's Dataverse (select Brown from dropdown and log-in using your Brown credentials). Dataverse is indexed in Google Scholar, Google Datasets, and NIH bioCADDIE. Dataverse provides data sets with digital object identifiers (DOIs) for citation purposes. Other features includes drag and drop upload and download metrics. Online access to deposits can be limited to only the depositor or open to the public. The per file limit for uploading a data set is 2.5GB. Users can also opt to create their own Dataverses within Harvard Dataverse with storage limit of up to 1TB. Contact Data_Management@brown.edu if you need assistance with preparing and/or depositing data sets in the Brown University Dataverse.

Brown University OSF for Institutions [https://osf.io/institutions/brown/] (Faculty and students can self-upload)

The OSF (Open Science Framework) is maintained by the Center for Open Science (COS). OSF is recommended by several journals for public data sharing but it is also very useful as an online collaborative and project management tool. Faculty and students can log-in with their Brown credentials, create a project on osf.io, and then opt in to associate their projects with Brown University under 'Settings". Online access to projects/data can be limited to only the collaborators or opened to the public. OSF integrates with several platforms, including GitHub, ArXiv, Google Drive, DropBox. Features include versioning and download/project views metrics. OSF provides a DOI service for providing deposited data sets with a digital object identifier for citation purposes. The per file limit is 5GB. Contact Data_Management@brown.edu if you need assistance with preparing and/or depositing data sets in OSF.

ICPSR [https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/(Faculty and students can self-upload)

The ICPSR is the main archive and data sharing repository for quantitative (survey and statistical) data in economics, social sciences, and public health fields. ICPSR is recommended by many journals and the National Science Foundation for disseminating quantitative data. Brown is a paying subscriber to ICPSR and depositing data is free for Brown faculty and students. ICPSR staff offers curatorial services and support for deposit as well as a secure deposit option for ensuring that data requiring online access limited to only 'qualified researchers' with an approved IRB protocol and data use agreement (DUA), in addition to more secure online/physical enclave services for securely accessing data containing personally identifiable information, archived with participants' consent. ICPSR also offers OpenICPSR for sharing data with non-ICPSR subscribers and not requiring their curatorial or enclave services. Both ICPSR and OpenICPSR provide a DOI service for providing deposited data sets with a digital object identifier for citation purposes. Contact Data_Management@brown.edu if you need assistance with preparing and/or depositing data sets.

QDR (Qualitative Data Repository) [https://qdr.syr.edu/(Faculty and students can self-upload)

The QDR is the main archive and data sharing repository for qualitative (interviews, focus group, ethnographic, and case study) data. QDR is recommended by many journals and the National Science Foundation for disseminating qualitative data (text, audio, video). Brown is a paying subscriber to QDR and depositing data is free for Brown faculty and students. QDR staff offers free online curatorial consultations and support for deposit as well as a secure deposit options for data archived with participants' consent. QDR provides a DOI service for providing deposited data sets with a digital object identifier for citation purposes. Contact Data_Management@brown.edu if you need assistance with preparing and/or depositing data sets and/or schedule a consult with staff at qdr@syr.edu for a skype/phone consultation with QDR and depositing qualitative data sets in QDR.

Open Repositories

In addition to the repositories above, there are open and generalist repositories that Brown does not have a membership with, but are free for anyone to use and are recommended by journals.

GitHub [https://github.com/] is a code-versiong repository for sharing code and software. Obtain a DOI (digital object identfier) for a GitHub repo by depositing code in Zenodo.

Zenodo [https://zenodo.org/] is a generalist and open repository maintained by CERN and the European Union. Zenodo provides DOIs (digital object identifiers) for deposits.

Commons Open Repository Exchange (CORE) [https://mla.hcommons.org/] provides Modern Language Association's (MLA) Humanities Commons members with a permanent, open access storage facility for their scholarly outputs. 

Find a Repository

Here are some tools and resources for looking for repositories. In addition to these below, be sure to contact your funder program officer/journal editor to ensure the selection of appropriate repositories.                                          

The Registry of Research Data Repositories allows for you to search for repositoies by data type and field.

The Directory of NIH data sharing repositories allows for searching for repositories funded by NIH.

The Fairsharing.org website allows for searching for data and metadata standards and databases and data policies created by journals.

Brown Digital Repository

Brown Digital Repository (BDR) [https://repository.library.brown.edu/(Faculty can self-upload | Students can request access to upload)

The BDR is Brown's institutional repository focused on the long-term storage and dissemination of research outputs created by Brown's faculty and student researchers. The BDR hosts Brown's Open Data Collection of research outputs licensed by their creators for free access and reuse for research purposes as well as data sets associated with honors theses, master's theses, and doctoral dissertations. The BDR provides a DOI service for providing deposited data sets with a digital object identifier for citation purposes. Faculty can self-upload files directly to the BDR; however, students should email bdr@brown.edu to request access to upload. Online access to deposits can be limited to only the depositor, to only the Brown University community with log-in credentials or open to the public. While there is no set limit or restrictions on data set size, the Library recommends deposits limit the size of files to less than 10GB to accommodate upload/download. Contact the BDR for assistance at bdr@brown.edu if you need assistance with preparing and/or depositing data sets in the BDR.