Data Repositories

Finding a data repository

There are many resources to help you select an appropriate repository to share your data:

  • Registry of Research Data Repositories ( global registry of research data repositories covering many different academic disciplines.
  • NIH Data Sharing Repositories: to help researchers locate an appropriate resource for sharing their data, as well as to promote awareness of resources where datasets can be located for reuse, see these lists of domain-specific and generalist data repositories maintained by the National Library of Medicine.
  • Emory Dataverse: the Emory Libraries provides access to an open data repository for researchers to deposit and share their data.
  • Clinical Research Data Repositories: Emory maintains systems of clinical and health data for research purposes. Principal investigators may wish to share datasets from clinical research at Emory via available repositories.

Considerations before depositing your data

When selecting a data repository, look for one that supports the FAIR principles:

  • Findable—are the data in the repository well described and assigned a persistent identifier, such as a DOI?
  • Accessible—can users access the data through a web browser and download the files, or access the data directly from a software program?
  • Interoperable—do the data and any documentation follow broadly accepted and established standards and vocabularies?
  • Reusable—is the provenance of the data provided? Are the terms of reuse included with the data and clear to anyone who uses the data for their own research?

If your data include information that is confidential or sensitive but still of interest to other researchers, also look for a repository with experience handling such information. For quantitative data, the ICPSR accepts and manages restricted-use data.

Preparing your data for deposit

Data repositories will typically provide instructions about:

  • data types and file formats accepted
  • metadata or documentation required from all depositors
  • any costs to deposit
  • options to restrict access to or set an embargo period for your data

If you have described your data during your project, kept your files organized, and prepared for costs incurred, the deposit process will go much easier.