The availability of raw data in substance abuse scientific journals

Antonio Vidal-Infer, Rafael Aleixandre-Benavent, Rut Lucas-Domínguez, Andrea Sixto-Costoya
Journal of Substance Use

Objective: The availability of research data sets is an important milestone since it can enhance the dynamics of research. This study aims to analyse the PubMed Central repository to determine the availability and type of raw data sets in Substance Abuse journals indexed in the Journal Citation Reports.

Methods: A search of the 39 journals from the Substance Abuse category of both editions (Sciences and Social Sciences) of the 2014 Journal Citation Reports was conducted. A study of the supplementary material of the original articles was performed through a search in the PubMed Central repository. The number and types of files were registered.

Results: The search in PubMed Central showed that only 4.7% of original articles contained supplementary material uploaded, being text and .pdf files the most frequent materials whereas spreadsheets and raw data represent less than 10%.

Conclusion: The main finding of this study is that the exchange of data in the substance abuse field is not a common practice since researchers are still reticent.