What is a data paper?

Data papers thoroughly describe datasets, and do not usually include any interpretation or discussion (an exception may be discussion of different methods to collect the data, e.g.). Some data papers are published in a distinct “Data Papers” section of a well-established journal. It is becoming more common, however, to see journals that exclusively focus on the publication of datasets. The purpose of a data journal is to provide quick access to high-quality datasets that are of broad interest to the scientific community. They are intended to facilitate reuse of the dataset, which increases its original value and impact, and speeds the pace of research by avoiding unintentional duplication of effort.

Here is an example:

Lucarini, G., Wilkinson, T., Crema, E. R., Palombini, A., Bevan, A., & Broodbank, C. (2020). The MedAfriCarbon Radiocarbon Database and Web Application. Archaeological Dynamics in Mediterranean Africa, ca. 9600–700 BC. Journal of Open Archaeology Data, 8(1), 1.DOI: https://doi.org/10.5334/joad.60

Are data papers peer-reviewed?

Data papers typically go through a peer review process in the same manner as articles, but being new to scientific practice, the quality and scope of the process is variable across publishers. Some examples of Data Journals in the field of archeology are:


Data Papers & Data Journals (University of Oregon): https://guides.library.oregonstate.edu/research-data-services/data-management-data-papers-journals

Last updated: 30/05/2023