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National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis

NCEAS Data Principles

The Center is committed to making ecological data available to the broader scientific community. To meet this goal, the Center:

  • Requires that derived data generated during an NCEAS research project be well documented and made publicly available. NCEAS provides technical assistance to do so.
  • Urges that data used to generate derived products be well documented and made openly available. NCEAS provides technical assistance to do so.
  • Respects the intellectual property rights of data owners who use their data in NCEAs research projects.


Management and Distribution of NCEAS Data and Information

NCEAS' goal is to foster sharing and dissemination of ecological data.  We require that all derived data created at NCEAS be well documented and made publicly available within the KNB: Knowledge Network for Biocomplexity or within the EDI: Environmental Data Initiative for LTER groups. We define derived data as data resulting from analyses from which the original data cannot be reconstituted. We employ this policy because most of the data used in research at NCEAS was collected and is used under other auspices. However, we STRONGLY encourage individuals to thoroughly document original data under their control and make it publicly available as well. The Center provides staffing and computing resources to assist with data documentation (description adequate for data exchange) and accessibility for both derived and original data.

These additional policies also govern working group management of data and information:

  • In general, NCEAS data sets may not be sold or redistributed by the recipient.
  • NCEAS requires that copies of analytical tools developed by NCEAS investigators be deposited with the Center. Copies of software products developed by NCEAS staff to support sponsored projects will be kept at the Center and used where appropriate to support other NCEAS activities.
  • Copies of any publications resulting from NCEAS support must be provided to NCEAS at the time of publication.
  • Extenuating circumstances that may prevent full compliance  should be discussed with NCEAS staff.
  • The LTER Data Access Policy should be followed by all LTER synthesis groups

In order to implement this policy, project participants must agree to this Statement prior to initiating research activities.