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Research Data Management

Elements of a Data Citation

A citation for a data set is very similar to that for a research publication. The basic elements are:

  • Author(s)
  • Date of publication
  • Title
  • Publisher and/or Distributor
  • Persistent identifier (such as a DOI)

Data citations may also include:

  • Version or edition
  • Resource type (e.g. database, dataset)
  • Fixity information (e.g. a checksum or Universal Numeric Fingerprint)


Charbonneau, P., Dyer, E., Lee, J., Yaida, S. (2016). Data and scripts from: Linking dynamical heterogeneity to static amorphous order. Duke Digital Repository.

Deschenes, Elizabeth Piper, Susan Turner, and Joan Petersilia. Intensive Community Supervision in Minnesota, 1990-1992: A Dual Experiment in Prison Diversion and Enhanced Supervised Release [Computer file]. ICPSR06849-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2000. doi:10.3886/ICPSR06849

Sidlauskas B (2007) Data from: Testing for unequal rates of morphological diversification in the absence of a detailed phylogeny: a case study from characiform fishes. Dryad Digital Repository. doi:10.5061/dryad.20

Additional References

For a quick guide to data citation, see this resource developed by the International Association for Social Science Information Services & Technology.

For more information about the guiding principles underlying the elements of a data citation, see the Joint Declaration of Data Citation Principles.

When you share your data in a repository, be sure to include the information needed to uniquely identify your dataset so that others can cite it easily. And note that sharing your data increases citations for the associated publication, too!