[open-science] Centre for Global Development adopts open data policy for publications

Tim Davies tim at practicalparticipation.co.uk
Tue Aug 2 10:26:08 UTC 2011

Hey All,

Just spotted the link below and thought might be of interest to both
open-development and open-science list members:


The Centre for Global Development have adopted a new policy of publishing
data and code alongside their research outputs, and David's post invites
comment on the policy and outlines some of the issues they've been exploring
in developing it. Brief extract from the policy below (

"CGD analyses should be acts of social science. By some definitions, a *sine
qua non* of science is replicability. The responsibility for replicability
is especially great for research that aims to influence policy and
ultimately affect the lives of the poor. Bruce McCullough and Ross McKitrick
put it well in their report, Check the Numbers: The Case for Due Diligence
in Policy Formation <http://www.pages.drexel.edu/~bdm25/DueDiligence.pdf>:

When a piece of academic research takes on a public role, such as becoming
the basis for public policy decisions, practices that obstruct independent
replication, such as refusal to disclose data, or the concealment of details
about computational methods, prevent the proper functioning of the
scientific process and can lead to poor public decision making.

In fact, transparency has many benefits:

   - It makes analysis more credible.
   - It makes CGD more credible when it calls on other organizations, such
   as aid agencies, to be transparent.
   - Data and code are additional content, appreciated by certain audiences.
   - It increases citation of CGD publications—by people using associated
   data sets.
   - It curates, saving work that otherwise tends to get lost as the staff
   turns over.
   - Preparing code and data for public sharing improves the quality of
   research: researchers find bugs.
   - In the short term, CGD’s leadership in transparency will differentiate
   it from its peers. In the long term (one hopes), CGD’s leadership will raise
   standards elsewhere."

All the best,

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