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The survey of researchers at LSE is in full swing. If you are an LSE researcher and haven’t already responded, go to


We’ve had 77 responses so far, and there are some interesting results starting to emerge. For example, in response to the question:

Do you plan to preserve your research material and data beyond the end of the project? The responses were:

Yes, and it will be publicly available 32%
Yes, but it will be private/restricted 46%
No 5%
Not sure 17%

and drilling a bit further into the barriers that stop researchers making their material publicly available, we asked

What are the main factors that could deter or prevent you from making your material and data publicly available? Which gave the responses:

Contractual factors 27%
Commercial sensitivity 9%
The data cannot be anonymised 27%
Intellectual property rights issues, including copyright 28%
Ethical issues 31%
Reputational considerations 14%
The cost of preserving materials and data 10%
Technological issues 9%
There is no reason to make it available 29%
I don’t know how to make it available 12%
Other 5%
[People may select more than one checkbox, so percentages add up to more than 100%.]
Rather worryingly, 29% said they saw no reason to make it available, which makes me wonder how to get the “open and free at the point of access” message across. It certainly points to a need for culture-change thinking and techniques first, since these people won’t even attend the training we are designing in this project if they can’t perceive a need for it.