Exploring Open Data: If you can’t share the product, share the process

Posted on June 14, 2016   by Dr Jennifer Gardy

Open data has the potential to revolutionise microbial genomics. But in practice, many of the benefits of this technology remain untapped. So how can we achieve greater data sharing? Over the coming weeks, we’ll be featuring some highlights from a panel discussion on open data at the Annual Conference 2016.

This week, Dr Jennifer Gardy from the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control and the University of British Columbia talks about sharing processes.

Exploring Open Data: If you can't share the product, share the process – Dr Jennifer Gardy

“When I moved from the academic world into the academic health sciences sector, the siloing of data – both cultural and technological – surprised and shocked me. I’ve stood by and watched as data integration and predictive analytics are being used in amazing ways in other domains, and always felt disappointed that we couldn’t harness the same forward momentum in public health.

“I recognise that for each person practicing open science and early data release, there are probably many people who’d love to do the same but can’t, due to restrictions outside of their control. To those individuals, I’d say that if you can’t share the product, at least share the process, so that while your data may not yet be publicly accessible, you and your team are.”

This panel was hosted by the PHG FoundationYou can read more about their approach to open data and their model for data sharing here.

Dr Jennifer Gardy is a Senior Editor for Microbial Genomics, a new open access and open data journal published by the Microbiology Society. Find out more about the journal here.