We at the Royal Society of Chemistry believe that where possible, all data associated with the research in a manuscript should be Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable (FAIR), enabling other researchers to replicate and build on that research. Authors are expected to submit both their code and data supporting their manuscript to community-recognized data repositories or a general repository if no community resource is available. Referees have to be able to access code and data during the peer-review process, and public release should be coordinated with the publication of the manuscript.
All research articles submitted to Digital Discovery must be accompanied by a data availability statement (DAS) which provides information about where data, software and code supporting the results reported in a published article can be found (more information can be found in the ‘Data availability statement’ section below).
If authors are unable to publicly share their code and data due to employer policies or previous arrangements they still need to release as much data and tools as possible (datasets, analysis scripts, etc.) and detail the reasons for the omission of other resources in the data availability statement. The reasons for restrictions on data and code sharing will be assessed by the editor at submission who reserves the right to reject the manuscript if these conditions are excessively prohibitive.
Under any circumstances, all supporting data and code must be made available to editors and peer reviewers at the time of submission for the purposes of evaluating the manuscript.
Data availability statements
In order to maintain high standards of transparency, research reproducibility, and to promote the reuse of new findings a data availability statement (DAS) is required to be submitted alongside all articles. The DAS should include, where applicable, links to code and datasets which have been analysed or generated during the study and shared in an external data repository. This section should list the database, accession number, DOI, URL or any other relevant details. In case of code deposition, the exact version and date of access to a repository have to be described for future reproducibility. If deposited in a public repository associated codes and datasets are required to be formally cited in the reference section of an article.
A DAS can provide information about the data presented in an article (e.g. in Figures or Tables) and provide a reason if code or data is not available to access. If supporting data or code have been included in the article’s electronic supplementary information (ESI), this should also be stated here.
A DAS is required to be submitted alongside all manuscripts as an accompanying file. It will be published as part of the articles accepted for publication and can be found by readers following the Conclusions section of the paper.
Examples of data availability statements which can be used are shown below:
- The code for [description] can be found at [URL] with [DOI – if available]. The version of the code employed for this study is version XXXX.
- Data and processing scripts for this paper, including [description of data types] are available at [name of repository] at [URL – format https://doi.org/DOI].
- This study was carried out using publicly available data from [name of repository] at [URL] with [accession number].
- Alternatively: The code, analysis scripts, and datasets supporting this article have been uploaded as part of the supplementary material.
- The data analysis scripts of this paper are available in the interactive notebook X [Example, Google Collab].
- As this is a [Review/Perspective article], no primary research results, data, software or code have been included.
The following statement is not acceptable: “Data are available upon request from the authors".
Choosing a repository
The Royal Society of Chemistry supports the TRUST principles for digital repositories - Transparency, Responsibility, User focus, Sustainability and Technology - for repository selection and strongly encourages the use of repositories offering persistent identifiers, such as DOIs, for deposited datasets. These help make robust connections between datasets and papers, e.g. via the inclusion of a Data Availability Statement.
The following websites may help for searching and selecting subject specific repositories.
Software / code can be deposited in the repositories listed below:
- GitHub Please also consider archiving code in combination with a repository that can issue a DOI. For example: https://guides.github.com/activities/citable-code/
- Code Ocean
Where subject specific or institutional/funder repositories are not available, authors may wish to choose a general repository, such as:
Dryad Digital Repository - Fees apply
figshare - Fees apply
Harvard Dataverse - Contact repository for datasets over 1 TB
Open Science Framework - Free of charge
Science Data Bank - Free of charge
Zenodo - Donations towards sustainability encouraged