DataCite - Cite Your Data

Why is it so important to cite data?

Books and journal articles have long benefited from an infrastructure that makes them easy to cite, a key element in the process of research and academic discourse. We believe that you should cite data in just the same way that you can cite other sources of information, such as articles and books.

DataCite DOIs help further research and assures reliable, predictable, and unambiguous access to research data in order to:

  • support proper attribution and credit
  • support collaboration and reuse of data
  • enable reproducibility of findings
  • foster faster and more efficient research progress, and
  • provide the means to share data with future researchers

DataCite also looks to community practices that provide data citation guidance. The Joint Declaration of Data Citation Principles is a set of guiding principles for data within scholarly literature, another dataset, or any other research object (Data Citation Synthesis Group 2014). The FAIR Guiding Principles provide a guideline for the those that want to enhance reuse of their data (Wilkinson 2016).

Data Citation Examples

We recognise that the challenges associated with data publication vary across disciplines, and we encourage research communities to develop citation systems that work well for them. Our recommended format for data citation is as follows:

Creator (PublicationYear). Title. Publisher. Identifier

It may also be desirable to include information about two optional properties, Version and ResourceType (as appropriate). If so, the recommended form is as follows:

Creator (PublicationYear). Title. Version. Publisher. ResourceType. Identifier


  1. Data Citation Synthesis Group (2014). Joint Declaration of Data Citation Principles. Martone M. (ed.) San Diego CA: FORCE11
  2. Wilkinson, M. D., Dumontier, M., Aalbersberg, Ij. J., Appleton, G., Axton, M., Baak, A., … Bourne, P. E. (2016). The FAIR Guiding Principles for scientific data management and stewardship. Sci. Data, 3, 160018.