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Last year, a researcher produced a nice dataset that happens to be uniquely well-suited for use in a study I plan to carry out. At this time, I am in the process of applying for funds. Does it make sense to contact him asking if he would be interested in a future collaboration which, provided the project is funded, would commence in 2019? The advantage of doing this now would be to mention the potential collaboration in my proposal. Note that the data is open access, so I could just use it without contacting him. Nor is he anyone famous, but I feel that a connection would make my project appear more concrete and realizable. I wonder how all this might be perceived by him however, what would you expect?

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    "Y-yes?" I tried putting on the shoes of the addressee-to-be. I'd be glad to have a further collaboration, a bit flattered that you asked, and willing to know how much work I'd need to invest and if there is any funding to share. I also highly doubt anyone would forbid you to use the data. – Oleg Lobachev Jan 10 '18 at 23:08
  • This sounds promising. I was worried about the uncertainty involved in the request, that the project has not yet been funded, but I guess that is a pretty common scenario. Thanks. – Asdf Jan 12 '18 at 21:30

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