When you choose to publish with PLOS, your research makes an impact. Make your work accessible to all, without restrictions, and accelerate scientific discovery with options like preprints and published peer review that make your work more Open.

Open Data

Open Data is a strategy for incorporating research data into the permanent scientific record by releasing it under an Open Access license. Whether data is deposited in a purpose-built repository or published as Supporting Information alongside a research article, Open Data practices ensure that data remains accessible and discoverable. For verification, replication, reuse, and enhanced understanding of research.

Benefits of Open Data

Readers rely on raw scientific data to enhance their understanding of published research, for purposes of verification, replication and reanalysis, and to inform future investigations.

Ensure reproducibility
Proactively sharing data ensures that your work remains reproducible over the long term.

Inspire trust
Sharing data demonstrates rigor and signals to the community that the work has integrity.

Receive credit
Making data public opens opportunities to get academic credit for collecting and curating data during the research process.

Make a contribution
Access to data accelerates progress. According to the 2019 State of Open Data report, more than 70% of researchers use open datasets to inform their future research.

Preserve the scientific record
Posting datasets in a repository or uploading them as Supporting Information prevents data loss.

PLOS Open Data policy

Publishing in a PLOS journal carries with it a commitment to make the data underlying the conclusions in your research article publicly available upon publication.

Our data policy underscores the rigor of the research we publish, and gives readers a fuller understanding of each study.

Read more about Open Data

Data repositories

All methods of data sharing data facilitate reproduction, improve trust in science, ensure appropriate credit, and prevent data loss. When you choose to deposit your data in a repository, those benefits are magnified and extended.

Data posted in a repository is…

…more discoverable

Detailed metadata and bidirectional linking to and from related articles help to make data in public repositories easily findable.

…more reusable

Machine-readable data formatting allows research in a repository to be incorporated into future systematic reviews or meta analyses more easily.

…easier to cite

Repositories assign data its own unique DOI, distinct from that of related research articles, so datasets can accumulate citations in their own right, illustrating the importance and lasting relevance of the data itself.

…more likely to earn citations

A 2020 study of more than 500,000 published research articles found articles that link to data in a public repository were likely to have a 25% higher citation rate on average than articles where data is available on request or as Supporting Information.

Open Data is now more discoverable and accessible

Now, you can earn an Accessible Data graphic for your article, by depositing your data in a repository.

An animation showing a lighthouse light revolving

A new experiment spanning all PLOS journal websites aims to make it easier for researchers to find data, as a way to encourage data access and reuse. Beginning March 29 2022, published PLOS articles with Open Data deposited in select repositories will feature an eye-catching Accessible Data graphic with a link to the associated dataset. The graphic highlights to readers that the data is accessible, and provides a direct link to the data in the repository. This benefits both authors and readers for a number of reasons, including the data is more findable and authors of articles sharing data in a repository on average benefit from more citations.

All new and previously published articles with a single link, in their Data Availability Statement, to data deposited in Dryad, Figshare, or Open Science Framework (OSF) will receive the Accessible Data graphic automatically. Depending on the results of the experiment, additional repository integrations may be added in future. Read more.

Data sharing is now easier than ever

PLOS Pathogens

Our new trial integration gives PLOS Pathogens authors the option to upload data files directly to Dryad Digital Repository from the manuscript submission system.

Fast. Easy. Free.

It takes just minutes to upload a dataset and receive a unique, citable DOI from Dryad.

If accepted for publication, your dataset will undergo Dryad’s screening and curatorial process before becoming public with links to and from your published research article.

Your dataset will be hosted in perpetuity at no cost to you.

Fast. Easy. Free.

It takes just minutes to upload a dataset and receive a unique, citable DOI from Dryad.

If accepted for publication, your dataset will undergo Dryad’s screening and curatorial process before becoming public with links to and from your published research article.

Your dataset will be hosted in perpetuity at no cost to you.

Learn more about the benefits of Open Science.   Open Science

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