DASH, the data and specimen hub of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

Sci Data. 2018 Mar 20;5:180046. doi: 10.1038/sdata.2018.46.


The benefits of data sharing are well-established and an increasing number of policies require that data be shared upon publication of the main study findings. As data sharing becomes the new norm, there is a heightened need for additional resources to drive efficient data reuse. This article describes the development and implementation of the Data and Specimen Hub (DASH) by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) to promote data sharing from NICHD-funded studies and enable researchers to comply with NIH data sharing policies. DASH's flexible architecture is designed to archive diverse data types and formats from NICHD's broad scientific portfolio in a manner that promotes FAIR data sharing principles. Performance of DASH over two years since launch is promising: the number of available studies and data requests are growing; three manuscripts have been published from data reanalysis, all within two years of access. Critical success factors included NICHD leadership commitment, stakeholder engagement and close coordination between the governance body and technical team.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Databases, Factual*
  • Humans
  • Information Dissemination*
  • National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (U.S.)
  • United States