I was wondering if it's OK to use the data presented in the form of Tables in other publications and cite them as the source of data? Like doing new analyses on these data? Should we ask for permission from the authors or just citing them would be OK?

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It is absolutely okay to use data from another publication for your own analyses. Indeed, this is one of the main reasons why often raw data must be made public (unless there are specific contractual or ethical reasons not to). Once the data is published it is in the public domain that there is no requirement to ask permission and the original authors have no right to object to you using it - if they wanted other not to use it, they shouldn't have published it. You do need to cite them however.

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    I feel like there could be some caveats here. For example, I work with spatial forestry data that is accessed via data sharing agreements. So while I can report results based on my analysis, I’m contractually not obligated to share the raw data without explicit consent. But, I believe that if the data itself is published in the public domain, then by all means it is fair game. Jun 30, 2020 at 13:37
  • @GrayLiterature: "contractually not obligated to share" or "contractually obligated not to share"? Jun 30, 2020 at 13:41
  • You are right - there are situations where it is not possible to make raw data available. The point that published data is available for all to use holds though. Jun 30, 2020 at 13:46
  • And, while you can "use" the data, you can't republish it without permission of some sort. Do you have a reference for "Once the data is published it is in the public domain"? I think that is probably wrong.
    – Buffy
    Jun 30, 2020 at 15:43
  • I don't have a reference. But we certainly re-publish data all the time. Every article we publish has some re-publishing. As far as i'm aware, copy-write applies to the figure or table, but not the data within it. Jun 30, 2020 at 16:10

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