January 19, 2022

Preprint: “FAIRsharing: Working With and For the Community to Describe and Link Data Standards, Repositories and Policies”

The following preprint was recently made available on bioRxiv.


FAIRsharing: Working With and for the Community to Describe and Link Data Standards, Repositories and Policies


Susanna-Assunta Sansone
University of Oxford

Peter McQuilton
University of Oxford

Philippe Rocca-Serra
University of Oxford

Alejandra Gonzalez-Beltran
University of Oxford

Massimiliano Izzo
University of Oxford

Allyson Lister
University of Oxford

Milo Thurston
University of Oxford

FAIRsharing Community




Community-developed standards, such as those for the identification and reporting of data, underpin reproducible and reusable research. The number of community-driven efforts has been on the rise since the early 2000s, their uptake, however, is slow and uneven. Analyzing 70 journals and publishers data policies, we find that these recommend databases and repositories 37 times more often than standards. When a reporting standard is recommended by a publisher, it is more likely to be a minimal reporting guideline than a model, format or ontology even if the latter are the machine-readable standards that underpin the utility of databases and repositories. Here, we evaluate the standards landscape, focusing on those for reporting data and metadata, and their implementation by databases and repositories; we also propose key performance indicators, and highlight the importance of developing open linked data models that instantiate these community standards. Lastly, we launch a call to action highlighting the role producers and consumers of standards and repositories must play to maximize the visibility and adoption of these resources.

Direct to Full Text Report (10 pages; PDF)
10 pages; PDF.

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.