Reflection over compliance: Critiquing mandatory data sharing policies for qualitative research

Research output: Working paper / PreprintPreprint


Many journals are moving towards a ‘Mandatory Inclusion of Raw Data’ (MIRD) model of data sharing, where it is expected that raw data be publicly accessible at article submission. While open data sharing is beneficial for some research topics and methodologies within health psychology, in other cases it may be ethically and epistemologically questionable. Here, we outline several questions that qualitative researchers might consider surrounding the ethics of open data sharing. Overall, we argue that universal open raw data mandates cannot adequately represent the diversity of qualitative research, and that MIRD may harm rigorous and ethical research practice within health psychology and beyond. Researchers should instead find ways to demonstrate rigour thorough engagement with questions surrounding data sharing. We propose that all researchers utilise the increasingly common ‘data availability statement’ to demonstrate reflexive engagement with issues of ethics, epistemology, and participant protection when considering whether to open data.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationPsyArxIV
Publication statusPublished - 29 Sept 2023


  • Open Research
  • Open Data
  • Open Science
  • Qualitative methods


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