Big data needs big governance: best practices from Brain-CODE, the Ontario Brain Institute’s neuroinformatics platform

Shannon C. Lefaivre et al in Frontiers of Genetics: “The Ontario Brain Institute (OBI) has begun to catalyze scientific discovery in the field of neuroscience through its large-scale informatics platform, known as Brain-CODE. The platform supports the capture, storage, federation, sharing and analysis of different data types across several brain disorders. Underlying the platform is a robust and scalable data governance structure which allows for the flexibility to advance scientific understanding, while protecting the privacy of research participants.

Recognizing the value of an open science approach to enabling discovery, the governance structure was designed not only to support collaborative research programs, but also to support open science by making all data open and accessible in the future. OBI’s rigorous approach to data sharing maintains the accessibility of research data for big discoveries without compromising privacy and security. Taking a Privacy by Design approach to both data sharing and development of the platform has allowed OBI to establish some best practices related to large scale data sharing within Canada. The aim of this report is to highlight these best practices and develop a key open resource which may be referenced during the development of similar open science initiatives….(More)”.