There is broad interest in regulatory effectiveness, transparency, and access to data underpinning scientific research as it touches on fundamental aspects of the scientific process. The importance of ensuring public health and increasingly stringent and potentially costly regulations have further underscored the importance of these issues in government, industry and academic circles.
Access to underlying data is a key tool to evaluate the soundness of scientific research and regulations for which science is used. Throughout its history, HEI has had a commitment to transparency and data access, which extends to making data from HEI-funded studies available for reanalysis, replication, and extended analyses by others.
Read more about HEI's data access policies:
HEI maintains a strong policy on facilitating access to underlying data and methods for the studies it funds. Data Access Policy
In 2018, HEI president Dan Greenbaum testified at a hearing convened by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) its proposed “Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science” rule. Among other points, Greenbaum stated that HEI has a longstanding commitment to the principles being addressed by the EPA proposal: producing science of the highest integrity and quality, with special attention to issues of reproducibility and transparency. The comments draw on that experience to recommend constructive ways forward to enhance transparency and data access, even while ensuring protection of the privacy of medical information of study subjects. Mr. Greenbaum’s oral comments. HEI’s more extensive written comments.
To promote data access and transparency, HEI actively supports the following activities:
Creation of databases compiled for large research programs, such as NMMAPS, NPACT, RIOPA, and MOSES, that provide access to those data for other researchers.
Extended analyses to further delve into scientific questions raised by original work, especially in the area of accountability research, that have provided important insights regarding the original findings. (See for example the reports by Dockery, Peel, and Wong and their colleagues.)
Going forward, HEI plans to emphasize such efforts by continuing to identify and promote approaches to data sharing, discuss how to make data more widely available, and identify challenges to data sharing in the context of confidentiality and other privacy protections.