OASPA endorses Make Data Count

Presenter slides: Daniella Lowenberg & Rachael Lammey, Catriona Maccallum, and Johannes Wagner

Please scroll down for additional responses to attendee questions.

There is increasing interest by many different actors and organisations in ‘open data publishing’ and what this actually entails. Scholarly publishers, alongside repositories, bibliometrics experts, infrastructure providers, libraries and others, have an important role to play in contributing to and supporting the infrastructure for research data publishing so that the data underlying publications can be discovered, ‘validated’, cited and reused by others. Collaborating and moving forward together is key and,
as this article sets out, kickstarting adoption is more important than achieving perfection in getting publishers started: 

The unique properties of data as a citable object have attracted much needed attention, although it has also created an unhelpful perception that data citation is a challenge and requires uniquely burdensome processes to implement. This perception of difficulty begins with defining a ‘citation’ for data. The reality is that all citations are relationships between scholarly objects.  A ‘data citation’ can be as simple as a journal article or other dataset declaring that a dataset was important to the creation of that work. This is not a unique challenge.
Data Citation: Let’s Choose Adoption Over Perfection (http://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.4701079), Lowenberg, Daniella, Lammey, Rachael, Jones, Matthew B, Chodacki, John, & Fenner, Martin (2021, April 19)

The past decade saw an emphasis on supporting data availability statements at journals, but as the Open Research/Science agenda has evolved (not least because of the fundamental links between sharing data, scientific innovation and evidence-informed policy making during the COVID pandemic), it has become clear that there needs to be more robust ways for journals to support data publishing. A key part of this is the widespread adoption by publishers of implementing best practices for data citations. Standardised – and community agreed – practices resulting in machine-readable ways to show which articles cite which data and vice-versa helps build an open, sustainable source of this information for the community to use. 

As leaders in the evolving open access publishing space, OASPA believes that developing and supporting best practices and broadly achievable standards for all aspects of open content is essential, including for research data. Because of this, OASPA endorses the Make Data Count initiative, and its goals of building for, and supporting, the inclusion of research data in responsible research assessment. 

We invite you to join us for an interactive webinar hosted in collaboration with Make Data Count centered on best practices for data citation.

When: July 13th, 2021 

Time: 3:30 – 4:30  pm UK (2.30 – 3.30 pm UTC)

Other timezones: 7.30 am Pacific Time, 9.30 am Central Time, 10.30 am Eastern Time, 11.30 am Brasilia Time, 4.30 pm Central European Time, 3.30 pm West Africa Time, 4.30 pm South Africa Standard Time, 8 pm India Standard Time, 10.30 pm Central Indonesia Time (Time converter tool)

We’ll be introducing Make Data Count, sharing a publisher case study on data publishing and citation, and covering the how, why and when for data citation. We will also look at the importance of supporting data citations from the OASPA perspective. We’ll also collect feedback from participants on data citation in their communities in preparation for a further piece of work with OASPA members – we want to understand and help remove barriers to data citation, and support those already doing this valuable work. 

Please come prepared with questions as there will be much time for discussion! 


  • Claire Redhead, OASPA (Moderator) 
  • Johannes Wagner, Copernicus Publications
  • Rachael Lammey, Crossref – Make Data Count
  • Daniella Lowenberg, California Digital Library – Make Data Count
  • Catriona Maccallum, Hindawi

Resources shared by panelists during webinar:

Resources shared in the chat by attendees

  • Tromsø recommendations for citation of research data in linguistics
  • Editorial: Data publication – ESSD goals, practices and recommendations
  • Developing a Research Data Policy Framework for All Journals and Publishers
  • CHORUS Publisher Data Availability Policies Index
  • Software Citation Policies Index
  • Publications should be FAIR
  • Responses to attendee questions

    Q. Happy to be involved and chat more with anyone – also re FORCE11, there are recent advances from another Working group towards software citation, there will be a lot of overlap, so will also be important to align efforts

    Rachael: Definitely. I know Crossref is involved in the software citation working group, so we’ll align in terms of our approach to citation for different types of resources, but I think some of the messaging aligns too in the case of ‘let’s recognize these valuable contributions as key components of the research’.

    Q. What can groups like CHORUS do to help support Make Data Count? We are working with AGU and NSF on data citations, have a list of publisher data and software policies, monitoring links between data and articles. We would love to help move the needle!

    Rachael: Encourage the publishers you work with to cite data and to share these citations in metadata.

    Q. This is great but if we wanted to get more educated on data policies-what other resources/courses can you recommend?

    Rachael: I recommended these guidelines: https://datascience.codata.org/article/10.5334/dsj-2020-005/. I know Howard Ratner recommended: https://www.chorusaccess.org/resources/chorus-for-publishers/publisher-data-availability-policies-index/.

    Q. Catriona’s recommendation for aligning publishers’ and repositories to support data citation is the focus of a project that NISO is planning to develop a standard. The NISO project is in very early days, but will need volunteers to help.

    Rachael: I know that the NISO proposal was shared within the Scholix RDA working group I co-chair, and it’s great that we recognize and coordinate with other initiatives in this space so we don’t all end up reinventing the wheel. I think Catriona spoke to the need to also have new people join the conversation as part of these groups too.

    Q. Where data citations are displayed in reference lists, should they be highlighted differently or displayed separately to ‘normal’ citations? If so, is there an example site where this is done well?

    Rachael: From the Crossref perspective, they should just be put in the reference metadata that is sent to us, no need to separate them out. Catriona did warn that this does run the risk of making them seem like a different thing/second class citizens to other citations!

    Panelist biographies

    • Rachael Lammey (@rachaellammey)
      Rachael Lammey is Head of Special Programs at Crossref. Based in Oxford (but at home for the last year), she worked for Taylor & Francis for six years before joining Crossref in 2012. Rachael worked in Product Management at Crossref before moving over to the Member & Community Outreach team in 2016. She is more than happy to talk about most things Crossref, but grant registration, data citation and organization identifiers are a good starting point!
    • Daniella Lowenberg (@DaniLowenberg)
      Daniella Lowenberg is based at California Digital Library, within the University of California, where she leads various initiatives in open data publishing. She is currently the Product Manager for Dryad, Principal Investigator for the Sloan Foundation funded Make Data Count initiative, and co-chair of the FORCE11 Research Data Publishing Ethics working group.

    • Catriona MacCallum (@catmacOA
      Catriona MacCallum is Director of Open Science at Hindawi. She has 20 years experience in scholarly publishing and 15 years in Open Access Publishing. She has a PhD from Edinburgh University and went into publishing as a professional Editor initially working for Elsevier, where she was Editor of Trends in Ecology & Evolution, before joining the Open-Access publisher PLOS in 2003 to launch PLOS Biology as one of the Senior Editors. She also acted as a Consulting Editor on PLOS ONE, leaving PLOS as Advocacy Director in 2017. She is currently a member of the European Commission’s Open Science Policy Platform and the UKRI Open Access Practitioners Group. She serves on the Advisory Board of the Royal Society (Publishing), and is on the steering committee of the relaunched DORA initiative. She is a founding individual of the I4OC (Initiative for Open Citations) campaign.
    • Claire Redhead (Chair) (@OASPA)
      Claire Redhead is Executive Director of OASPA. Her publishing background began back in 2000. Editorial positions in UK publishing houses in the 12 years that followed provided her with valuable opportunities for developing key skills and varied experience in the academic journal and book publishing industry.  In 2012 Claire joined the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA), initially responsible for managing membership and communications for the organisation. Claire quickly took the lead to develop and grow OASPA during this time, and was appointed Executive Director of the association in 2016.
    • Johannes Wagner (@copernicus_org) Johannes Wagner oversees publication policies and business development at Copernicus Publications, a founding member of OASPA. While originally trained in mineralogy he is now a passionate advocate of open science and open data in particular. Next to supporting Copernicus journals in opening up their research data (and in fact, any research output alongside a paper) he is also heavily involved in shaping Earth System Science Data, one of the major data publication journals in the Earth and Environmental Sciences.

    Note that previous OASPA webinar details and recordings can be found here.

More Resources

The Initiative for Open Citations (I4OC)

The Initiative for Open Abstracts (I4OA)

The Hague Declaration

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