Open data

Last updated 27.2.2023

Openness of research data increases the reliability and reproducibility of scientific research. It is often possible to use the same data in multiple ways in different studies. However, open access to the data does not require that the data be fully open. For example, it is possible to store the data in secure data archives (repository) so that their reuse requires a research permit. However, just the terminology can be challenging – should we talk about research materials or data? And what should be included in data?

Opening data requires huge amount of planning early in the collection phase. Opening data is also affected by legal requirements (in particular the new GDPR-regulation) and by the terms set by funding bodies. And when we finally as far as opening the data, storing it so that it can be genuinely found and used requires efforts by individual researchers as well as a significant enabling infrastructure. Responsible processing of personal data or sensitive data requires the researcher to comply with both legislation and research integrity. 

The possibility of open access to research data requires a systematic and good management of the data from the beginning of the research process, for example by using a data management plan. International FAIR principles have been created to guide the production of research data. The aim of the principles is to make research material: 

  • Findable
  • Accessible
  • Interoperable
  • Re-usable

Expert panel in open data

Open data is one of the four fields of the National Coordination of Open Science and Research. Each field has its own expert panel which contributes actively in the making of national policies and recommendations.

The expert panel is chaired by Anne Sunikka (Aalto University) and the secretary is Marita Kari (TSV).

Working groups of the Expert Panel

Tutkimusmenetelmien avoimen saatavuuden osalinjaus (roughly: policy component on open access to research methods)
Person in charge: Leo Lahti (University of Turku)
 

FAIR-palveluiden soveltaminen (roughly: Applying FAIR services)
Person in charge: Jessica Parland-von Essen (CSC)

Datanhallinnan asiantuntijan ammatillisen pätevöitymisen tiekartta (roughly: Roadmap for the professionalisation of data management experts)
Person in charge: Mari Elisa Kuusniemi (University of Helsinki/Tuuli)

Palvelukatalogitietomalli (roughly: Data model for service catalogues)
Person in charge: Tua Hindersson-Söderholm (CSC)

Arkaluontoisten tutkimusaineistojen hallinnan ohjepäivitys (roughly: Updating the instructions for planning the management of sensitive and confidential data)
Person in charge: Katja Fält (TAU)

Tutkimusaineistojen kuvailuohjetyöryhmä (roughly: Instructions for describing research data)
Person in charge: To be annouced

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Please note that expert panel work is mainly carried out in Finnish.