Monday, 16 February 2015

Open data: Walking the walk

I've long been a supporter of open access for both data and publishing, but I have to admit that although I have almost exclusively published in OA (or hybrid) journals, my data has been known to languish on hard drives and only appear if someone actually asks for it.

Given that so much of the research that I do relies very heavily on other people providing easy, and public, access to their data, it's fairly hypocrytical of me to be so lax at putting my own data out there for the rest of the community to use.  That's why my new job is so exciting.

Last Monday I started a new job, in a new lab. It's not strictly a postdoc position and it's not attached to a research project (although I will probably be helping out with some analysis on the side). Instead the new job is as part of team aiming to create a database containing all of the data that has come out of the myriad projects from this lab and to make that data available to other researchers.  Given the heterogeneity of the data and projects, it looks like it will be a difficult, but interesting task and I hope that our success (see that optimism already) will encourage other labs to undertake similar projects.

I'll be updating the blog with accounts of roadblocks and successes as we go along.