The Swedish COVID-19 data portal is expanding

Sweden was the first country in Europe to launch a national data portal for research into COVID-19. The portal has expanded as more and more research projects have made their data available, new projects have started, and new data services have been established. The portal is operated by SciLifeLab in collaboration with the Swedish Research Council.

In the portal, researchers can find and share different types of data on COVID-19 in Swedish and international databases, and receive practical support with data management and data sharing. The portal also has information about research projects, publications and sample collections relating to Swedish COVID-19 research.

The Swedish COVID-19 portal is linked to a corresponding European portal, developed by the European Bioinformatics Institute (EBI), on behalf of the European Commission. EBI is part of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), of which Sweden is a member.

“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen how important it is for researchers to share their results and data with other researchers at an early stage, both nationally and internationally. This requires a clear common platform with a strong user support making the information accessible and useful to everyone. This is exactly what we have achieved by developing the Swedish data portal,” says Johan Rung, head of SciLifeLab’s data centre.

Since the launch in June 2020, the data portal has had almost 12 000 users and 62 000 page views. It has been expanded with various data bases, covering areas such as calls for research proposals, published articles and data sets from Sweden. The publication database currently holds just over 900 publications with co-authors from Swedish higher education institutions. In February 2021, SciLifeLab will launch a new database in collaboration with Biobank Sweden, covering sample collections and biobanks with COVID-19-related samples.

Swedish Research Council is co-funding

Sweden was the first country in Europe to launch a national data portal for research into COVID-19. A further three European countries now have their own portals, as does Japan.

“Internationally, we have received a very good response. Thanks to the portal, we now have a strong and well-established collaboration with other countries and their research data sharing initiatives, as well as with the large joint European infrastructures. This results in an increased scientific impact for the projects that make their data available,” says Johan Rung.

The Swedish Research Council is co-financing the portal with 6 million SEK, and is responsible for coordination with the European initiative. Researchers awarded funding by the Swedish Research Council are expected to publish their research data and research results of relevance to the COVID-19 pandemic with open access as quickly as possible. Determining which data can be published with open access shall always be based on applicable legislation.

The Swedish Research Council supports the Wellcome Trust’s statement calling on the research community to ensure that research findings and data relevant to the management of the coronavirus are shared rapidly and openly. Read the full statement on the Wellcome Trust’s website External link.




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