Journals Library

Why share data?

Making clinical trial data sets available to investigators beyond the original research team can improve patient care, advance medical knowledge and provide better value for money from health research.

Data generated through participation of patients and the public should be put to maximum use by the research community and, whenever possible, translated to deliver patient benefit. Data sharing benefits numerous research-related activities: reproducing analyses; testing secondary hypotheses; developing and evaluating novel statistical methods; teaching; aiding design of future trials; meta-analyses; and helping to prevent error, fraud and selective reporting.

Data sharing achieves many important goals for the scientific community, such as:

  • Reinforcing open scientific inquiry
  • Encouraging diversity of analysis and opinion
  • Promoting new research, testing of new or alternative hypotheses and methods of analysis
  • Supporting studies on data collection methods and measurement
  • Facilitating education of new researchers

Data sharing and the NIHR Journals Library

Your final report must include a statement about your data sharing and accessibility. The statement should provide a clear and positive indication of where and when the data will be shared. Possible responses might state that all available data:

  • Can be obtained from the corresponding author
  • Is included as an appendix to the report
  • Can be obtained from the corresponding author via the (name of) repository

The statement should be positioned within the acknowledgements section of your report.

For more information on NIHR's position on the sharing of research data please use the following link:

If you have deposited (or intend to deposit) data from your study into a data repository or archive, please supply the DOI or URL so that the link to the data archive can be displayed on the NIHR Journals Library website alongside your published report. Please see issue 17:10 of Health Technology Assessment “The CRASH-2 trial: a randomised controlled trial and economic evaluation of the effects of tranexamic acid on death, vascular occlusive events and transfusion requirement in bleeding trauma patients” as an example of this activity.