There are more than 1,000 repositories where scientists can deposit data and documents associated with their manuscripts. The majority of these are subject-specific—there are ones specialized for chemical and molecular structures (Crystallography Open Database, Protein Data Bank, Coherent X-ray Imaging Data Bank), neuroimaging data (OpenNeuro, NeuroVault), and mathematical models (BioModels, The Network Data Exchange), just to name a few. Several publishers recommend that authors submit their material to such subject-specific repositories whenever possible.
Subject-specific repositories provide a few advantages, according to Grace Baynes, the vice president of research data and new product development at Springer Nature: they’re designed with the specific research community that’s using those data in mind, and putting data into a repository that your peers use may optimize your chances of connecting with a future collaborator. But such repositories still don’t exist for many research areas, and that’s where general repositories can play a key role, she adds.
Here’s a brief guide to some of the most commonly used general-purpose repositories.
|Repository name||Type of files accepted||Size limits||Submission fee||DOI assignment available|
|Dryad||Any format||None listed||$120 US per data package (all data associated with one publication)||Yes|
|figshare||Any format||5 GB per file for free accounts, but files up to 5 TB in size possible||Free for individuals, paid accounts for institutions||Yes|
|Harvard Dataverse||Any format||2 GB per file (multiple uploads possible)||Free up to 1 TB||Yes|
|Open Science Framework (Center for Open Science)||No restrictions listed||5 GB per file (larger files can be stored as add-ons from other providers)||Free||Yes|
|Mendeley Data (Elsevier)||Any format||10 GB per dataset||Free||Yes|
|Zenodo (CERN)||Any format||50 GB per dataset (larger files allowed on a case-by-case basis)||Free||Yes|
Diana Kwon is a Berlin-based freelance journalist. Follow her on Twitter @DianaMKwon.