Data policy

The output of research is not only journal articles but also data sets, model code, samples, etc. Only the entire network of interconnected information can guarantee integrity, transparency, reuse, and reproducibility of scientific findings. Moreover, all of these resources provide great additional value in their own right. Hence, it is particularly important that data and other information underpinning the research findings are "findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable" (FAIR) not only for humans but also for machines.

Therefore, Copernicus Publications requests depositing data that correspond to journal articles in reliable (public) data repositories, assigning digital object identifiers, and properly citing data sets as individual contributions. Please find your appropriate data repository in the registry for research data repositories: A data citation in a publication resembles a bibliographic citation and needs to be included in the publication's reference list. To foster the accessibility as well as the proper citation of data, Copernicus Publications requires all authors to provide a statement on the availability of underlying data as the last paragraph of each article (see section data availability). In addition, data sets, model code, video supplements, video abstracts, International Geo Sample Numbers, and other digital assets should be linked to the article through DOIs in the assets tab. With Earth System Science Data (ESSD) Copernicus Publications provides a journal dedicated to the publication of data papers, including peer review of data sets. Authors should consider submitting a data paper to ESSD in addition to their research paper in another journal published by Copernicus Publications.

Best practice following the Joint Declaration of Data Citation Principles initiated by FORCE 11:


In addition to promoting these data citation principles, Copernicus Publications is a signatory of the Coalition on Publishing Data in the Earth and Space Sciences (COPDESS) commitment statement and the Enabling FAIR Data Commitment Statement in the Earth, Space, and Environmental Sciences.

Statement on the availability of underlying data

Authors are required to provide a statement on how their underlying research data can be accessed. This must be placed as the section "Data availability" at the end of the manuscript. Please see the manuscript preparation guidelines for authors for the correct sequence. The best way to provide access to data is by depositing them (as well as related metadata) in FAIR-aligned reliable public data repositories, assigning digital object identifiers, and properly citing data sets as individual contributions. If different data sets are deposited in different repositories, this needs to be indicated in the data availability section. If data from a third party were used, this needs to be explained (including a reference to these data). Data Cite recommends the following elements for a data citation:

creators: title, publisher/repository, identifier, publication year (e.g. Loew, A., Bennartz, R., Fell, F., Lattanzio, A., Doutriaux-Boucher, M., and Schulz, J.: Surface Albedo Validation Sites, EUMETSAT [data set],, 2015).

If the data are not publicly accessible at the time of final publication, the data statement should describe where and when they will appear, and provide information on how readers can obtain the data until then. Nevertheless, authors should make such embargoed data available to reviewers during the review process in order to foster reproducibility. The Copernicus review system allows to define such assets as 'access limited to reviewers' and reviewers must then sign that they will use such data only for the purpose of reviewing without making copies, sharing, or reusing.

In rare cases where the data cannot be deposited publicly (e.g., because of commercial constraints), a detailed explanation of why this is the case is required. The data needed to replicate figures in a paper should in any case be publicly available, either in a public database (strongly recommended), or in a supplement to the paper.

Other underlying material

Data do not comprise the only information which is important in the context of reproducibility. Therefore, Copernicus Publications encourages authors to also deposit software, algorithms, model code, video supplements, video abstracts, International Geo Sample Numbers, and other underlying material on suitable FAIR-aligned repositories/archives whenever possible. These materials should be referenced in the article and cited via a persistent identifier such as a DOI.

With regard to software citation, please refer to the FORCE11 Software Citation Principles.