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Meet the woman transforming the future of science

A story about the long fight to advance science by making data open for everyone.

Watch the film 6 Minutes

“Jealously guarding your data may be good for you, but it’s not good for science.”

Maryann Martone Ph.D.

Meet the woman transforming the future of science

A story about the long fight to advance science by making data open for everyone.

Watch the film 6 Minutes

“Jealously guarding your data may be good for you, but it’s not good for science.”

Maryann Martone Ph.D.



For Maryann Martone, moving the needle wasn’t enough. She wanted to revolutionize the system. So she began the long fight to make data open to everyone.

It began at a Society for Neuroscience conference around 20 years ago. Maryann looked at one poster on an actin-binding protein. Then another. And another. While each poster looked like it was furthering the understanding of the brain, she realized that they were all just variations on the same work. Science was going in circles. Something had to change.

Watch Maryann tell her story and explain how data sharing is turning a new corner.

“Is your goal just to move the needle? That isn’t my goal. We have an obligation to society to do the very best we can, and if that requires reinventing the whole system, that’s what we must do.”

Maryann Martone, Ph.D.

As an established neuroscientist, Maryann understood the fear of getting scooped and wanting to keep data private. But she could also see the damage it was doing to scientific progression.

“Jealously guarding your data may be good for you, but it’s not good for science,” she challenges. “It’s not good for patients. It breaks our promise to society.”

Everyone thought Maryann had gone off the deep end, but she didn’t give up. After nearly 25 years, the community listened and she finally won the debate. As of next year, all grant applications to the National Institutes of Health will require a “robust and detailed plan” for how researchers will share their data.

It’s one of the most transformative changes ever to hit the scientific research community, and it never would have happened without Maryann.




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