Understanding Data Sharing Behaviors of STEM Researchers: The Roles of Attitudes, Norms, and Data Repositories

Youngseek Kim, Ping Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations


A number of factors influence STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) researchers' data sharing behaviors. Based on the theory of planned behavior, a research model focusing on beliefs, attitudes, norms, and resource factors was proposed. The research model was tested with a total of 1298 responses from a national survey in the United States (US). The data analysis results, using the partial least squares (PLS) technique, show that attitudinal beliefs (including perceived career benefit, risk, and perceived effort), disciplinary norms, and perceived availability of data repositories all have significant impacts on STEM researchers' attitudes toward data sharing, and further, both the attitude toward data sharing and the availability of data repositories have strong influences on researchers' data sharing behaviors. These results demonstrate that the theory of planned behavior is a useful theoretical framework for explaining STEM researchers' data sharing behaviors. From the practical perspective, this research suggests that information professionals can better serve STEM researchers by allocating their efforts in two ways: (1) Providing appropriate data services and tools to reduce researchers' efforts involved in data sharing, and (2) providing data repositories to facilitate researchers' data sharing behaviors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)189-200
Number of pages12
JournalLibrary and Information Science Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Library and Information Sciences


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