Data ownership

Data ownership: a change is needed in the culture of data ownership and availability. Without data there can be no research, but railway data is often not disclosed and inaccessible. Maintenance and disruption data are owned by contractors and there is no free knowledge exchange with other stakeholders, including researchers.

Similarly, passenger data is inaccessible because privacy issues complicate open-access. DelftRail can mitigate sensitivities about business confidentiality. Not all owners of data are willing to share them openly. DelftRail makes it possible to engage in institution-level negotiations with data owners. Similar to Duwind, an option is to gain data access for research purposes only, with anonymizing data in publications. Investigating smart combinations of non-competitive and competitive R&D is another option. Examples are TIFN (PPP food and nutrition research) and IMEC that use a front room/back room approach. In the front room, non-competitive R&D is organized in an open fashion with broader consortia, typically focusing on subjects of common interest and/or of a more fundamental nature. In the back room, limited groups of stakeholders can enter into R&D of a more confidential nature.