Sharing Social Science Data: Advantages and Challenges

Although major funding agencies now require social scientists to share their documented raw data, scientists have been reluctant to comply. The reasons include unwillingness to divulge all of the conditions under which the data were generated, cost in time and money, and the desire by social scientists to carry the research further themselves. Data sharing, however, promises to foster more open, cost-effective and cumulative research, and to improve the quality of methodology, data and inference. Sharing Social Science Data presents the major accomplishments of social scientists who have pioneered in data sharing, highlighting the advantages for social science. It also includes an examination of the reasons for data sharing, the specific sharing practices in various disciplines, the factors affecting the usefulness of shared data (documentation, archiving, and marketing), and individual and institutional concerns about data sharing. A timely examination, this cohesive and well written volume will interest graduate students and researchers in all areas of the social sciences. “…the chapters are thoughtful and well written, and they address many of the crucial issues faced by the social sciences in the 1990s. …anyone who wants to help shape the future of the social and behavioral sciences can benefit from giving this book at least a quick read.” – Contemporary Psychology

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