I'm a PhD student in an academic research laboratory. One part of my project involves collecting samples and generating data. Another part involves establishing a research database to store the results. As the project has grown, a Masters student and two post-doctoral fellows are also working on the samples and generating data. All data relating to the samples I collected is to be added to the database, regardless of who generated the data. Each entry in the database has an "owner" field to keep track of this. Our supervisor would like the database to be used more extensively by people working on other projects as well.
I am meeting some resistance from members of our group (both those workings on "my" project and on their own/other's projects) regarding submitting data/results to "my" database. At a recent meeting, I explained once again the concepts of a (central) database, that queries can easily extract data, that the "ownership" field keeps track of whose data point it is, and reminded everyone of the benefits of a central database which stores all data generated. I highlighted the kinds of analyses which can be undertaken comparatively on different data sets, how meta-analyses can be done, and so on. I then offered to do some research around the issue of database management and ownership. Some people in the group do not want to submit data to the database until their papers are published, despite the fact that it is impossible for anyone else in the group to simply throw together a "competing" paper from the data alone and publish it "first". This is also impractical because it means that data which is never published is never added to the database. It also means that no-one else has access to it UNTIL the paper is published, thereby slowing down other research. Internal sharing of this kind of data should be routine.
I would appreciate any suggestions of resources or comments around these issues. Should everyone sign a "waiver" regarding their data going INTO the database and another one regarding the use of data FROM the database? We're not a particularly mistrustful group, but everyone else in the group are "wet lab" researchers, so the concepts of databases and sharing data is possibly a little foreign to them.