Is OpenNeuro an accepted alternative to NDA for NIH-funded projects?

I know that OpenNeuro is approved for NIH Brain Initiative projects, but I wasn’t sure about other NIH-funded projects.

If so, are there steps that need to be taken on NIMH Data Archive (NDA), OpenNeuro, or elsewhere to prepare/share the data, specific to NIH-funded projects (e.g., in order to link the project on the NDA to the repository on OpenNeuro)?


Short answer: No

Longer answer: The NIH staff have automated systems that allow them to determine whether the data have been properly shared via NDA for any particular project. To extend this beyond NDA would require them to build substantial infrastructure to query other databases (like OpenNeuro) which does not appear to be in the cards right now.

Though it’s extra work, I would suggest depositing the data in both databases if they are suitable for open distribution via OpenNeuro. Making them available by OpenNeuro should substantially increase the likelihood that they will be reused (given how much easier they will be to access compared to NDA).

1 Like

Thank you! This is very good to know, although I’m a little surprised. I would assume that any automated systems the NIH staff have would also be used by the Brain Initiative, which much have some workaround since OpenNeuro is an approved NIH Brain Initiative repository. Still, it’s not too big of a deal to upload to both NDA and OpenNeuro.

1 Like

I would suggest that your PI raise this with NIH staff :slight_smile:

1 Like

I’m not sure where we fall on the funding spectrum, but HCP is prohibited from sharing data anywhere EXCEPT with the NDA at the moment. Our PIs have most definitely raised this with the NIH staff as the mandate has tied us to all manner of imaginable delays (in addition to making it difficult for users to procure said data after it is ‘Released’).