About NIH Figshare

The NIH Figshare Instance was a pilot data repository project conducted by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) from July 2019 through July 2020 as part of an initiative to understand the role of generalist repositories in making datasets resulting from NIH-funded research openly accessible (NIH announcement, blog post, and pilot outcomes). During this time, the NIH Figshare Instance provided a free repository solution for all NIH-funded researchers to store and share their research data and other materials underlying publication figures and tables, as well as data not associated with publications, to enhance the rigor and reproducibility of research results. The NIH Figshare Instance remains an active repository for discovery and reuse of public outputs, but no longer accepts new submissions. If you are a NIH-funded researcher or a member of a NIH-funded research team and are interested in sharing data, code, or other products of your research on Figshare, please see this guide on sharing NIH-funded research on figshare.com.

As part of the NIH Strategic Plan for Data Science, the NIH is committed to making data more accessible by providing solutions to store, find, and access datasets resulting from NIH-supported research. Researchers may sometimes find themselves with a requirement to share data but with no domain-specific repository to use. NIH engaged with Figshare on the pilot project to explore the role of generalist data repositories in the biomedical research data ecosystem. As an established repository, Figshare provided an easy way for researchers to share data, link it to funding sources, and get credit for their work. While the NIH Figshare pilot has concluded, NIH continues to support open access to funded research. Find more resources from the NIH’s Office of Data Science Strategy (ODSS) and the NIH Biomedical Informatics Coordinating Committee’s Data Sharing Resources page.

All data uploaded to the NIH Figshare during the pilot, along with all metadata descriptions, will be permanently available via Figshare and the nih.figshare.com portal. NIH Figshare provided space for a wide variety of research products for public dissemination, accepting any data resulting from NIH funding that was de-identified and did not contain sensitive information could be uploaded. All data types and file formats were accepted, including spreadsheet data and imaging data, multimedia files, code and software, and other research materials including workflows, figures, and more; the repository also accepted large datasets offering storage up to 500GB or greater upon request.

Prior to being published, data submitted to NIH Figshare was reviewed by Figshare staff to check for completeness and appropriateness. This review also ensured that the data and metadata were in line with the FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable) principles to maximize the discoverability and reusability of the shared data. All data in NIH Figshare were assigned a citable Digital Object Identifier (DOI), associated with a license for reuse, linked to NIH grants and other funding sources, and linked to associated publications. All content on NIH Figshare is openly accessible – including via the Figshare API – and is indexed in Google, Google Dataset search, Dimensions.ai, and other search engines. Usage metrics including views, downloads, citations, and Altmetrics are tracked and displayed for each item.

For more information on the NIH Figshare pilot, visit the NIH ODSS pilot outcomes page. For technical assistance with NIH Figshare or figshare.com, please contact info@figshare.com. For any additional questions, please contact ODSS at datascience@nih.gov.