Washington Update

NIH Seeks Feedback on Draft Data Management and Sharing Plan

By: Yvette Seger
Thursday, November 21, 2019

On November 6, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) issued a request for public comment on a draft agency policy for data management and sharing. The policy reinforces the agency’s commitment to demonstrating good stewardship of federal funds by ensuring that the outputs of NIH-funded research are accessible to other researchers and the public.

Over the past two decades, NIH has introduced several discipline-specific data sharing policies such as those governing genome-wide associated studies and access to scientific publications. The current draft policy is part of a broader agency effort to promote effective and efficient data management and exchange and adherence to FAIR data principles (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable).

The draft policy was informed by a request for information issued last year seeking stakeholder input on proposed provisions for a data management and sharing policy for NIH funded or supported research. In its response, FASEB highlighted several areas requiring additional clarification to strike an appropriate balance between administrative effort and utility.

These include adopting a flexible framework that accommodates the range of science funded by NIH; development of supplemental guidance to clarify the parameters of data sharing plans; and ensuring a mechanism to share all relevant data, including negative results.

In addition to seeking feedback on the proposed draft policy, NIH has released draft supplemental guidance pertaining to allowable costs and recommended data elements of data management sharing plans for comment.

Comments are due by January 10, 2020, and must be submitted through the comment form. Additional details about the draft policy can be found on the NIH Office of Science Policy’s website.