The Challenges of Sharing Data

Data sharing refers to the practice of giving data users in another organisation access to a data resource. You may want to grant access to your data to a researcher or a business that has the skills or technology to create value from the data, such as new insights.

What are the benefits of data sharing?

Done well, data sharing brings numerous benefits. It creates an ecosystem of organisations that can collaborate together to achieve common goals. Data sharing also plays a critical role in building knowledge for communal benefit

Data sharing challenges

Many data owners have difficulties in agreeing to share data. They may see data sharing as too risky because of privacy and security challenges. They may be concerned about losing control of “their data” and it being used inappropriately or disclosed to other parties. Understanding the challenges can help data owners to find solutions that overcome them.

Data sharing challenges in the private and public sectors

While data sharing is well-established in research institutions where it is a vital part of verifying results and conclusions, many data owners in private and public sector organisations feel challenged when sharing data for the first time. Some of these challenges include:

Why you need to address data sharing challenges

Data sharing has several benefits for progressive organisations and is considered critical for projects that need collaboration between stakeholders. Data sharing also contributes to the future success of a business by making information available and accessible. This data can then be reused and reinterpreted in ways that address new areas of understanding, such as in developing better government policy or enhancing consumer services.

By taking the right precautions and insisting on proper data management and organisation, data sharing can become a smooth and streamlined exercise.

Creating a data sharing agreement – the best way to break through

A data sharing agreement makes it easier for data owners and data users to propagate responsible data sharing and understand each other’s needs. A data sharing agreement based on sound principles lays everything out on the table so that both data owners and data users understand their obligations.

A good approach is to base the data sharing agreement around the best practices for keeping the data safe from disclosure and misuse. This structure helps to guide you towards getting data sharing off the ground without breaching privacy law or creating other adverse impacts on people and organisations

What should a data sharing agreement contain?

A data sharing agreement should address:

Are you actively looking for ways to overcome the challenges of data sharing and enjoy the benefits
it offers? Creating an effective data sharing agreement is crucial.

Are you developing a Data Sharing Agreement?

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