Motivating data contributions via a distinct career currency

Mark Westoby*, Daniel S. Falster, Julian Schrader

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    6 Citations (Scopus)
    28 Downloads (Pure)


    If collecting research data is perceived as poorly rewarded compared to data synthesis and analysis, this can slow overall research progress via two effects. People who have already collected data may be slow to make it openly accessible. Also, researchers may reallocate effort from collecting fresh data to synthesizing and analysing data already accessible. Here, we advocate for a second career currency in the form of data contributions statements embedded within applications for jobs, promotions and research grants. This workable step forward would provide for peer opinion to operate across thousands of selection and promotion committees and granting panels. In this way, fair valuation of data contributions relative to publications could emerge.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number20202830
    Pages (from-to)1-6
    Number of pages6
    JournalProceedings of the Royal Society B : biological sciences
    Issue number1946
    Publication statusPublished - 10 Mar 2021

    Bibliographical note

    © 2021 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


    • career
    • currency
    • data contributions


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