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Funding open research data (ORD) projects: swissuniversities supports the development of ORD practices and data stewardship in research communities

These days, several Swiss higher education institutions are embarking on the implementation of their Open Research Data (ORD) projects. These projects were designed within the framework of the Swiss National Strategy for Open Research Data and the associated ORD Action Plan, which swissuniversities, the ETH Domain, the Swiss Academies of Arts and Sciences and the Swiss National Science Foundation adopted in 2021 and 2022 respectively. The ORD Strategy puts forward the goal that publicly funded research data should be accessible to the research community and the public. Easier access to and reusability of research data leads to more effective research for the benefit of society as a whole. ORD thus forms an important aspect of Open Science, a paradigm that stands for open access to research and a cultural change in science as a whole.

The action lines of the ORD Action Plan for which swissuniversities is responsible will be implemented from 2022 –2024 through the Open Science I, Phase B – Open Research Data programme. In 2022, project ideas were submitted for several calls for proposals. On the one hand, projects will be implemented within the framework of the Swiss Open Research Data Grants (CHORD) organised jointly with the ETH Domain. CHORD promotes a coherent  bottom-up support for ORD practices across disciplines and higher education institutions in Switzerland and thus fosters synergies and complementarities. In particular, it aims to strengthen exchange among the research communities.

  • Explore projects: 14 projects explore new directions in ORD and test and develop potential ORD practices
  • Establish projects: 16 projects start their work to establish existing ORD practices based on a research agenda and a common understanding of ORD principles. The Establish projects offer the opportunity to expand the reach of such practices and develop them into recognised standards.

The project submissions were evaluated in an open review process in accordance with the UNESCO Recommendation for Open Science and approved by the Delegation Open Science in December 2022. "With these initiatives, researchers and research communities in Switzerland are taking an important step towards implementing the ORD Strategy. This allows us to ensure the high quality of research results and to contribute to the visibility and impact of research," says Jean-Marc Piveteau, President of the Delegation Open Science.

In addition, the higher education institutions were invited to submit action plans for the institutional development of data stewardship:

  • 25 projects at 31 higher education institutions will advance the professionalisation of data stewards and services in the coming months. Data stewards manage and improve access to research data within their institution and act as a link and advisor between researchers and IT, libraries, and data infrastructure.

Within the framework of the Open Science I programme, further calls for proposals for the implementation of the ORD Action Plan will follow in the coming months.

Contact: Ariane Studer, Co-Coordinator Programme Open Science I, Phase B – Open Research Data,


More information on the approved projects:

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