The U.S. National Institutes of Health last week released a draft policy that will require all investigators with NIH funding to make their data sets available to colleagues. For the first time, grantees holding any NIH-funded grant—not just those above a $500,000 threshold in direct costs—will need to submit a detailed plan for sharing data, including steps to protect the privacy of research subjects.
For the biomedical research community, the draft rules, which update a 2003 policy, aren’t a big surprise: NIH has been gathering input on its ideas for the past 3 years. “We knew there was a lot of anxiety in the community about this and so we slowly shared our thinking and its evolution,” says Carrie Wolinetz, associate director for science policy at NIH in Bethesda, Maryland. Now, she says, “This is what the policy looks like in draft form.”
NIH will collect comments through 10 January 2020 and hopes to finalize the new rules next year. Here is more background on the policy: