On June 30, 2020, the Research Data Alliance (RDA) published the final version of the RDA COVID-19 recommendations and guidelines for sharing research data for four research areas: clinical research, epidemiology, omics and the social sciences. In the period from April to June 2020, 600 data management experts and experts in these fields produced a comprehensive set of guidelines related to the sharing of research data in the context of a pandemic caused by the COVID-19 virus. The document facilitates and assists researchers and data stewards in applying best practices with the aim of increasing the efficiency of their work, and the report itself can also serve as a blueprint for future emergencies. The recommendations also provide guidelines for policy makers, founders, publishers and data sharing infrastructure providers to ensure timely and quality data exchange.
During the creation of the document, open research data proved to be a key component in the process of finding an appropriate response to the needs caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Some of the guidelines highlighted in the report relate to:
- the importance of timely sharing of clinical data
- encouraging the publication of research data with the publication of research papers
- the need to support rapid response strategies to epidemiological data
- use of general guidelines for linking important social and behavioral data in all pandemic research
- emphasizing the importance of sharing the program by which the analysis of research data was conducted
- general guidelines for the application of the law and the use of relevant ethical frameworks relating to the collection, analysis and exchange of data in similar emergencies
More information about the RDA COVID-19 working group and the final report can be found on the RDA website.
All those interested can join the RDA Croatia group free of charge and contribute their knowledge and experience in further RDA activities. Apply for membership on the RDA Croatia website.