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Mindset Shift

Tighter funding budgets and increased competition can deter researchers from sharing their data, writes Rachel Yoho, a PhD student at Arizona State University, at Nature Jobs.

"The increasingly competitive environment for grant funding, and the 'publish or perish' attitude promotes the 'mine, mine, mine' attitude among scientists," she says.

But, by shifting perspectives, Yoho says, researchers can overcome such objections to data sharing.

Rather than embracing the mindset of "it's our grant money, it's our data," she says researchers could take a longer view. "Re-shaping data ownership by changing the publishing attitude from a career to scientific perspective may support the original intent of scientific research: to gain knowledge through building society, improving lives, and preserving the environment," she says.

Similarly, instead of focusing on data ownership, researchers could instead think of data sharing as a way of getting a fresh perspective and take on their data. Yoho adds that funding agencies and data repositories could encourage this take.

"The possibility of furthering data sharing trends opens up new opportunities to engage with research, communication, and training," Yoho says. She then adds that "a cultural trend towards cooperation and data sharing is emerging in the movements creating data repositories and collaborative databases."