Factors Affecting Sharing Research Data among Engineering Researchers in Iran

Document Type : Original Article


1 Assistant Professor, Department of Information Science and Epistemology, Zabol University, Zabol, Iran

2 Associate Professor, Department of Information Science and Epistemology, Zabol University, Zabol, Iran


Objectives: The development of information and communication technologies has made it possible to reuse the research data of researchers in conducting new studies. Data sharing occurs when scientists make their data available for use by other researchers to conduct research or other research activities. The current research aimed to investigate the status of research data sharing among researchers in Iran in the technical and engineering fields from the individual, organizational and technical dimensions.
Methods: This research was applied in terms of purpose and descriptive survey in terms of the data collection method. The research population consisted of Iranian researchers in the field of engineering in Iran who had scientific production in the WOS database in 2021. Due to the lack of email registration of all the authors, it was not possible to accurately estimate the statistical population. Therefore, to determine the statistical sample using Cochran's formula, 411 people were randomly selected from the population. The data collection tool was a questionnaire designed electronically and sent to the statistical sample. SPSS software was used to analyze the findings.
Results: The results showed that organizational and technical factors have a significant effect on the individual's behavior in sharing research data. Technical factors had a greater impact on individual behavior than organizational factors. Individual factors had no significant effect on data-sharing behavior. Also, the relationship between hidden technical and organizational factors was positive and significant. In addition, the findings showed that gender has a significant effect on individual factors and researchers' job has a significant effect on organizational factors. There was no significant difference between demographic variables including age, work experience, academic rank and degree, and technical, organizational, and individual factors. In addition, the research results showed that many researchers consider the concern about the time-consuming nature of data, misusing, and misinterpreting shared data as reasons for not wanting to share research data. Despite the requirement for the researchers in this field to deliver the research data and the relative provision of hardware and infrastructure facilities to implement this, the appropriate training courses for training management and data sharing are not conducted by the organizations.
There was no adequate financial or intellectual support, and no proper infrastructure for sharing data in publications. Technical factors affecting the sharing of research data, such as the familiarity and use of metadata standards for data sharing and accessibility, as well as the familiarity and use of thematic, public, and organizational repositories were in an unfavorable situation.
Conclusions: Considering the research results and the research data sharing and related factors among the researchers in the field of engineering and technology have been neglected, it is necessary for the research stakeholders in the field of technology and engineering to receive appropriate organizational, technical and financial support in order to increase knowledge and willingness of researchers to share data. Furthermore, creating culture-building and understanding the capabilities of research data is also required to provide the necessary training to researchers in the field of engineering.


Main Subjects

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