Publishing data

Publishing data

Publishing research materials

The PHRN considers the dissemination of scientific research findings to serve important public interests including:

  • dissemination of knowledge;
  • freedom of discussion throughout society;
  • openness and transparency; and
  • good stewardship of public resources used to conduct research.

Types of publication

Research findings can be disseminated in a range of different ways including academic journals and books as well as non-refereed publications, such as web pages, and other media such as conference presentations and professional or institutional repositories.

Review requirements

Research projects using linked data often involve a range of different people and organisations including the research participants, data custodians, researchers and research organisations. It is therefore important to ensure that all the relevant people and organisations are aware of any publications and have had the opportunity to review them prior to publication.

Specific requirements for the review of publications prior to publication or restrictions on communication will be outlined in any researcher agreements with data linkage units, data custodians or funding agencies. Researchers should ensure that they are aware of any specific contractual requirements relating to their research project and to honour these. The purpose of sending publications for pre-publication review is usually to ensure that:

  • any privacy/confidentiality requirements are upheld;
  • there has been no misuse of the data; and
  • all organisations involved are aware of the research findings and their possible consequences once made public.

Agreements will usually specify exactly who must be notified of a publication; the length of time to be provided for review and the timeframe in which those reviewing the publication must provide any feedback. The time frames will vary from agreement to agreement. Researchers should check this carefully, particularly if their research project involves multiple agreements.

Required acknowledgement language

The Acknowledgement is a formal statement that recognises the contributions of individuals and organisations, other than the authors, to the work being reported.

Confidentiality, data transfer and research funding agreements often include specific requirements for the inclusion of an acknowledgement in all publications and sometimes the exact wording is specified. Researchers should ensure that these requirements are followed.

In the absence of any specific contractual requirements, the data linkage units and data custodians who contributed to a research project should be included in the acknowledgements. Examples of suggested wording are included below:

The authors wish to thank the staff at the [insert data linkage unit/s] and [insert names of Data Collections involved].

The authors wish to thank the Linkage and Client Services Teams at the [insert data linkage units], in particular [insert names of staff who provided extra help], as well as [insert names of Data Collections/Custodians involved].

In addition, acknowledgement of the Australian Government should be done either by the use of an approved logo or by the following written statement for those who receive PHRN funding for infrastructure and research:

This project is supported by the Population Health Research Network which is a capability of the Australian Government National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy.

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