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NIST plans to increase public access to federally funded research results

July 06, 2023

NIST has released a plan to make its scientific data and publications more readily available and accessible, following a memo from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) instructing all government agencies to do so. NIST has presented its plan in its June 30 Draft for Public Comment, now open for comment. Comments may be submitted until 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on August 14 here.

The draft plan includes updates to the agency’s existing 2014 plan, which includes requirements for NIST to provide ways for the public to access and download, free of charge, agency-funded research publications and related data. The publications and data must be available immediately, if legally possible, or up to 12 months following publication. NIST must also provide a portal for public access to data associated with manuscripts, stand-alone datasets, and other research outputs. Thus, researchers must allow manuscripts and data related to a manuscript to be publicly available when published.

Also, data acquired via a NIST award must be made publicly available within three years of the end of the award unless the data is protected by legal, privacy, ethical, technical, intellectual property, or security limitations.

Researchers may incur publication costs related to these new guidelines. As stated in the White House memo, these costs may be included in the budgets submitted as part of research grant applications.

The Department of Energy and National Science Foundation also released similar plans in June.

NOTE: This article was updated on July 11, 2023, to include mention of the Department of Energy and National Science Foundation plans. See the July 13, 3023 SSTI Weekly Digest for more on these two plans.

nist, research, doe, nsf