Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Open data and citation impact

Heather A. Piwowar, Roger S. Day, and Douglas B. Fridsma, Sharing Detailed Research Data Is Associated with Increased Citation Rate, PLoS ONE, March 21, 2007.  Abstract:  

Background.  Sharing research data provides benefit to the general scientific community, but the benefit is less obvious for the investigator who makes his or her data available.

Principal Findings.  We examined the citation history of 85 cancer microarray clinical trial publications with respect to the availability of their data. The 48% of trials with publicly available microarray data received 85% of the aggregate citations. Publicly available data was significantly (p = 0.006) associated with a 69% increase in citations, independently of journal impact factor, date of publication, and author country of origin using linear regression.

Significance.  This correlation between publicly available data and increased literature impact may further motivate investigators to share their detailed research data.

CommentMany studies have shown a correlation between OA articles and citation impact.  I believe this is the first study to document a similar correlation between OA data and citation impact.  Spread the word to colleagues who are still hoarding data, waiting too long before releasing it, or unable to see any gain for themselves in data sharing.

Update (7/13/07). Also see Heather Piwowar's presentation on this paper at the NLM Biomedical Informatics Trainee conference.