According to SPARC, "Open Data is research data that can be freely used, reused and redistributed by anyone." Read more about it on their Open Data Fact Sheet.
Where do I Find Open Data?
Check out the many resources labeled with the Open Access open lock icon on the Find Data page of this guide.
Why Should I Consider Making my Data Open?
"Open Data has the potential to speed up the research process while simultaneously improving our confidence in those results," (SPARC on Open Data). Sharing your data openly using a Creative Commons license can advance knowledge and discovery, improve the scientific and scholarly record, increase access to your scholarship.
Start by articulating a Data Management Plan. Working through the steps of this plan as you design your research project (and revisit it throughout the project) will set you up properly for being able to share your data.
There are a variety of ways to share your data including submitting it with journal articles submissions, which is sometimes requested by publishers in the hard sciences. Another approach is to publish your data in an open repository. There are a many repositories available to meet your needs. See our lists on the Research Data Repositories Library Guide.