Code and Data Availability
Authors are strongly encouraged to make all materials used to conduct their research available to other researchers. Research materials necessary to enable the reproduction of an experiment should be clearly indicated in the Materials and Methods section. Relevant materials such as protocols, analytic methods, and study material should preferably be uploaded to an online repository providing a global persistent link/identifier. If this is not possible, authors are strongly encouraged to make this material available upon request to interested researchers, and this should be stated in the manuscript.
Examples of Data/Materials availability statements
- The data that support the findings of this study are openly available in [repository name] at [URL], reference number [reference number].
- The data that support the findings of this study are available in [repository name] at [URL/DOI], reference number [reference number]. These data were derived from the following resources available in the public domain: [list resources and URLs]
- The authors confirm that the data supporting the findings of this study are available within the article [and/or] its supplementary materials.
- Raw data were generated at [facility name]. Derived data supporting the findings of this study are available from the corresponding author [initials] on request.
- The data used to support the findings of this study are available from the corresponding author upon request.
The Journal strongly suggests that authors make all code and, if possible, data underlying the findings described in their manuscript available without restriction. If data cannot be made available due to confidentiality concerns, then this should be stated, together with a description of how others could potentially access the data.
Code and, where appropriate, data shall be deposited in repositories that meet accepted criteria as trustworthy digital repositories. The Journal does NOT publish supplementary materials itself. Personal websites, links to subscription-based online storage facilities (Dropbox, Google Drive, etc.), and online code repositories (Github, Bitbucket, etc.) are generally not acceptable, as they do not ensure persistence.
The Journal strongly encourages authors to also cite acceptable code and data repositories as part of the references. In general, acceptable code and data repositories provide persistent identifiers, such as DOIs, and maintain robust long-term archives.
This data policy will be implemented on January 1, 2020. Any paper submitted before that date will not have a data availability statement.
- The Code and Data Availability Statement must specify where code and data are each permanently deposited, listing the name(s) of repositories along with digital object identifiers or accession numbers for the relevant data sets.
- The Code and Data Availability Statement must specify the conditions under which the deposited materials can be retrieved. A taxonomy is being developed, but a non-limiting list of possible options might be access by download, possibly with (free) account creation and/or click-through license, access via a formal application process, specifying the conditions that an applicant may need to meet (nationality, membership in professional associations, security clearance, etc.) and for-fee access (purchase or subscription), stating the fee and conditions of use
- The Code and Data Availability Statement must specify the archival and curation policy of the institution curating the objects. For instance, the materials might remain accessible for 5 years, or "permanently".
- We note that typical "code repositories" (Github, Gitlab) and cloud-based storage systems (OneDrive, Google Drive, Dropbox, Amazon S3) do not qualify as permanent repositories, as objects in them can be deleted or reorganized at any time, and may rely on subscription services to remain available.
- However, we also note that it is possible to link such repositories to formal archives. An example is Making Your Code Citable. Alternatively, some repositories include within their workflow the ability to generate permanent archives with DOIs (Open Science Framework, Figshare).