SEG Data Policy

The Society of Exploration Geophysicists supports the open accessibility, discoverability, and preservation of scientific data to advance geoscience research and benefit industry, academia, and the public.

The Society is a signatory to the Coalition on Publishing Data in the Earth and Space Sciences (COPDESS) Statement of Commitment, which states “Earth and space science data are special resources, critical for advancing science and addressing societal challenges—from assessing and responding to natural hazards and climate change, to use of energy and natural resources, to managing our oceans, air, and land.” 

To help provide a full assessment of results presented in its journals, SEG encourages authors, when feasible, to make available data necessary to understand, evaluate, replicate, and build upon their reported research.

For the purposes of this policy, data include but are not limited to, the following:

  • Data used to generate or be displayed in figures, graphs, plots, videos, animations, or tables in a paper.
  • New protocols or methods used to generate the data in a paper.
  • New code/computer software used to generate results or analyses reported in the paper.
  • Derived data products reported or described in a paper.

As a society devoted to advancing an applied science, SEG recognizes that much of the data and code associated with research reported in its journals cannot be released publicly or otherwise shared. As throughout the Society’s history, papers from industry authors and academic researchers whose work is built on unsharable industry-owned data are invited, encouraged, and welcome. Yet to foster transparency, attract more article usage, and improve the reuse and reproducibility of published research, authors are strongly encouraged, but not required, to include at least one example of recorded data in the manuscript to illustrate the technology or concept being proposed. Authors are asked during the submission process to indicate whether data necessary to reproduce the results reported in the paper are available. A data-availability statement will be published along with the just-accepted and final versions of accepted papers. Before sharing of data, authors must ensure they have the permission to do so.

The Society encourages use of appropriate domain repositories (primarily those for geoscience data) that aggregate published data and/or code and support Digital Object Identifier (DOI) registration and discoverable metadata as the preferred means of making available data and/or code associated with journal papers. SEG encourages authors whose data sets and/or code are not appropriate for a domain-specific repository to use a general repository such as Dryad or figshare. Less preferred but acceptable is deposit of data and/or code in an archived institutional Web site. Other types of files supporting papers (e.g., animations or videos) may be better suited for publication as supplements alongside the paper within the SEG Digital Library and in GeoScienceWorld.

Data and software, if publicly available, should be cited fully, including an entry in References. Each data or software deposit should have a DOI link and comply with the aims of DataCite and Force 11’s Joint Declaration of Data Citation Principles that reinforce consideration of data and code as citable products of research.

For an inventory of repositories, visit the COPDESS Directory of Repositories.

Some geophysics-related and general repositories that support DOI registration, open licenses, and rich metadata:

IRIS Data Management Center — This rich repository promotes free and open exchange of time-series data from many types of geophysical sensors.

National Centers for Environmental Information — NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) are responsible for hosting and providing access to one of the most significant archives on earth, with comprehensive oceanic, atmospheric, and geophysical data.

ScienceBase — ScienceBase, operated by the United States Geological Survey, houses and serves any type of file data and provides automatically generated Web services as distribution options for certain types of geospatial data.

UNAVCO — UNAVCO promotes research by providing open access to geodetic data for quantifying the motions of rock, ice, and water that are monitored by a variety of sensor types at or near the Earth's surface.

The Open Seismic Repository — A collection of 3D and 2D seismic data and well data, hosted by dGB Earth Sciences, in connection with their OpendTect open-source software. Data sets up to about 100GB are available as BitTorrent, a peer-based file-downloading protocol, and shared under CC BY-SA.

Dryad — A curated resource that makes the data underlying scientific publications discoverable, freely reusable, and citable.

figshare — A repository where users can make all of their research outputs available in a citable, shareable, and discoverable manner.

PANGAEA — The information system PANGAEA is operated as an open access library aimed at archiving, publishing, and distributing georeferenced data from earth-system research. 

SEG Wiki — A catalog of geophysical data that is readily available for download. Authors may submit open data sets for reference from the wiki’s Open Data page if deposited elsewhere.

Github — Private, public, or open source, all repositories are equipped with tools to help users host, version, and release code.

Madagascar — An open-source software package for multidimensional data analysis and reproducible computational experiments for researchers working with digital image and data processing in geophysics and related fields.

Adopted by Publications Committee in March 2018. 

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