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PLoS Biol. 2016 Apr 8;14(4):e1002432. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1002432. eCollection 2016 Apr.

Gauging the Purported Costs of Public Data Archiving for Long-Term Population Studies.

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Department of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland.


It was recently proposed that long-term population studies be exempted from the expectation that authors publicly archive the primary data underlying published articles. Such studies are valuable to many areas of ecological and evolutionary biological research, and multiple risks to their viability were anticipated as a result of public data archiving (PDA), ultimately all stemming from independent reuse of archived data. However, empirical assessment was missing, making it difficult to determine whether such fears are realistic. I addressed this by surveying data packages from long-term population studies archived in the Dryad Digital Repository. I found no evidence that PDA results in reuse of data by independent parties, suggesting the purported costs of PDA for long-term population studies have been overstated.

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