Another Step Towards More Open Science

We are pleased to announce that, going forward, the Data Availability statement that provides a link to the publicly archived data supporting papers in Journal of Ecology is now in front of the paywall. Readers without a subscription to Journal of Ecology can now not only access the abstract (both in English and second language), but also click through to the datasets that underlie the results presented in an article.

Journal of Ecology and the other British Ecological Society journals have been mandating the public archiving of data supporting papers since January 2014 and the Society has been covering the costs of archiving data in the Dryad Digital Repository from the beginning of the mandate. Since that time we have reported a high level of compliance with this policy (here). An Open Data Virtual Issue of papers was compiled in 2017 based upon the most-downloaded datasets from the Dryad Digital Repository in the then five BES journals. At Journal of Ecology, we find the Dryad to be the most frequently used archive with others such as Figshare, Zenodo and Github far behind.

Of the 608 Journal of Ecology datasets archived as of September 10th on Dryad, the top five downloaded are:

Dryad link Data set Downloads
Vieilledent G, Gardi O, Grinand C, Burren C, Andriamanjato M, Camara C, Gardner C, Glass L, Rasolohery A, Ratsimba H, Gond V, Rakotoarijaona J (2017), Data from: Bioclimatic envelope models predict a decrease in tropical forest carbon stocks with climate change in Madagascar, Dryad, Dataset,
Paine CET, Amissah L, Auge H, Baraloto C, Baruffol M, Bourland N, Bruelheide H, Daïnou K, de Gouvenain RC, Doucet J, Doust S, Fine PVA, Fortunel C, Haase J, Holl KD, Jactel H, li X, Kitajima K, Koricheva J, Martínez-Garza C, Messier C, Paquette A, Philipson C, Piotto D, Poorter L, Posada JM, Potvin C, Rainio K, Russo SE, Ruiz-Jaen M, Scherer-Lorenzen M, Webb CO, Wright SJ, Zahawi RA, Hector A (2015), Data from: Globally, functional traits are weak predictors of juvenile tree growth, and we do not know why, Dryad, Dataset, 248
Thomas SC, Martin AR, Mycroft EE (2015), Data from: Tropical trees in a wind-exposed island ecosystem: height-diameter allometry and size at onset of maturity, Dryad, Dataset,
Finegan B, Peña-Claros M, de Oliveira A, Ascarrunz N, Bret-Harte MS, Carreño-Rocabado G, Casanoves F, Díaz S, Eguiguren Velepucha P, Fernandez F, Lorenzo L, Licona JC, Salgado Negret B, Vaz M, Poorter L (2015), Data from: Does functional trait diversity predict aboveground biomass and productivity of tropical forests? Testing three alternative hypotheses, Dryad, Dataset,
Mayor JR, Wright SJ, Turner BL (2014), Data from: Species-specific responses of foliar nutrients to long-term nitrogen and phosphorus additions in a lowland tropical forest, Dryad, Dataset,

Here’s how to access the dataset. The Open Research link at the bottom of the Abstract (or at the bottom of the full paper behind the paywall) provides a link to the public archive where the data are stored. At the moment, you can see this in the Early View papers as shown below:

Click on the Open Research drop down menu and the Data Availability statement shows up. The example above shows the link to the Dryad data archive for this paper:

We are pleased to report this enhanced availability of data and encouraged to learn of the large numbers of downloads of these datasets associated with papers in our journal. With data accessibility information now in front of the paywall we anticipate even more use of these open data. We would be particularly interested to learn of studies where data obtained from these sources have been used. Let us know!

David Gibson, Executive Editor of Journal of Ecology

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