Attitudinal findings from the questionnaire analysis

Two research centres are involved in the project; the Centre for Research in Bioscience (CRIB) working in the fields of biomedicine, plant science, bio-sensing technology and environmental science and the Centre for Health and Clinical Research (CHCR) working in the areas of healthcare, service provision and public health policy. Collaborative research between NHS trusts, charities, research councils, institutions and researchers is a feature of health research.

In our questionnaire we asked two attitudinal questions:

  1. Please rate the following reasons not to share data at the end of a research project from 1-5, where 1 is the most important?

    The data is commercially sensitive
    The data is ethically sensitive
    The privacy of participants should be protected
    I want to maintain my academic reputation and research interests
    The confidentiality of the subjects should be protected
    The funders or partners wish to maintain a competitive edge
    The data is protected by copyright

  2. Please rate the following reasons for limiting access to research data in order of importance from 1 to 5, where 1 is the most important

    How the data will be used
    Limited life of the data
    I might wish to use it for future research
    Others ability to understand the data and outputs

The attitudinal questions revealed some interesting differences between researchers in the two centres.

CRIB researchers rated maintaining their academic reputation and research interests and the funders’ competitive edge as the two most important reasons not to share data. Commercial sensitivity was considered the next most important. These three reasons were rated of lower or very low importance by CHCR researchers.

Researchers involved in human participation research, rated ethics, privacy and confidentiality as important reasons not to share data as opposed to researchers not involved in this type of research.

Only one reason showed uniformity of attitude; copyright was rated low by most researchers.


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