Data citation roadmap for publishers

A recent article published in the journal Scientific Data presents a practical roadmap for scholarly publishers to implement data citation in accordance with the Joint Declaration of Data Citation Principles (JDDCP), a synopsis and harmonization of the recommendations of major science policy bodies.

This declaration was developed by the Publishers Early Adopters Expert Group as part of the Data Citation Implementation Pilot (DCIP) project, an initiative of and the NIH BioCADDIE program. The group, and authors of the paper include representatives from major publishers and journals such as Helena Cousijn (Elsevier), Amye Kenall (Springer Nature), Emma Ganley (PLoS), Melissa Harrison (eLife), Thomas Lemberger (EMBO Press) and more.

The structure of the roadmap presented in the paper follows the “life of a paper” workflow and includes four categories:


The roadmap is intended to be publisher-agnostic so that all publishers can use this as a starting point when implementing JDDCP-compliant data citation.

Figure 1 from Cousijn et al. (1) Data citation in text; (2) Reference; (3) Globally resolvable unique identifier. Example from Beresford NA, et al. (2016). Available at

Authors reading this roadmap will also better know what to expect from publishers and how to enable their own data citations to gain maximum impact, as well as complying with what will become increasingly common funder mandates on data transparency.

Cousijn, H. et al. A data citation roadmap for scientific publishers. Scientific Data.
5:180259 doi: 10.1038/sdata.2018.259 (2018).