Why do Open Science & Incentivizing Data Sharing matter? Visit the African Open Science Platform to learn more

Why, how and where should researchers share their data? What do research institutions have to gain by embracing Open Science?  

In support of these and other questions about (and practices for) unleashing the power of Open Science through Open Data, in 2016,  ASSAf launched The African Open Science Platform (AOSP).

The platform is supported by the South African Department of Science and Technology (DST), funded by the National Research Foundation (NRF), and is directed by CODATA, and the Committee on Data of the International Council for Science (ICSU).

The main objective of the AOSP

is to support promotion, development and coordination of :

  • Open Data Policies, 
  • Data Capacity building & Training and 
  • Data Infrastructures,

in order to advance African Open Science Framework, to enhance data accessibility, sharing and impact. 

This commitment has been undertaken through

the simultaneously optimisation of a range of push-pull variables (or an integrated set of arrangements), in terms of:

  • Providing links to the international Open Data & Science programmes and standards,
  • Harvesting, spreading, supporting and circulating news about good experiences, ideas, and practices related to Open Data & Science, 
  • Harnessing international partnerships,
  • Creating and participating in national Open Science forums (*),

through which Open Data policies and the establishment of Data Infrastructures could be discussed and advocated.

Sharing Knowledge on Open Data & Open Science through webinars

During International Open Access Week 2017, AOSP delivers a series of webinars on incentives for sharing data :

Presentations (via SlideShare)


Incentivizing data sharing: a “bottom up” perspective 
(by Dr Louise Bezuidenhout)

  • Appropriate policy;
  • Suitable infrastructure;
  • Effective training;
  • Responsible data practices;
  • Must not assume that globally-endorsed incentives have equal traction in local settings.

Open Science and Data Sharing
(by Prof Martin Wittenberg)

  • To make Data Sharing more successful, researchers and research organisations should be provided not only with incentives, but also with trusted data platforms that can facilitate this process
    (e.g. DataFirst dedicated to making it easier for researchers to access social science microdata);
  • Balancing between data provenance and privacy (defining its access clearance level).

Open Science Incentives
(by Veerle van den Eynden)

Future incentives for researchers:

  • Policies and agreements – create level playing field;
  • Training in Data Management & Sharing
    (see: UK Data Service; Data Carpentry);
  • Direct funding for Research Data Management support;
  • Infrastructures supporting Data Lifecycle
    (see: UK Data Archive);
  • Broaden norms in support of data sharing;
  • Shared standards in support of micro-publishing/micro-citation.

Stay tuned for more news from the AOSP website.
To learn more about the AOSP, take a look at:
The African Open Science Platform (slides, by Prof Geoffrey Boulton, 2017);
Perspectives from the African Open Science Platform (slides, by Susan Veldsman, 2017) 

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