File Formats

In order to ensure your data is accessible and usable to the largest number of researchers, we encourage you to post data in preferred formats, where possible.

Please see below for a list of preferred and acceptable formats, for each file type.

Type Preferred format(s) Acceptable format(s)
Text documents Adobe Portable Document Format (.pdf) OpenDocument Text (.odt), Microsoft Word (.doc, .docx), Rich Text Format (.rtf)
Plain text Unicode (.txt) Non-Unicode (.txt)
Markup language Extensible Markup Language (XML) (.xml), HyperText Markup Language (HTML) (.html, .xhtml); If needed: Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) (.css), Extensible Stylesheet Language Transformations (XSLT) (.xslt), JavaScript (.js), Elementary Stream (.es) Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML) (.sgml)
Spreadsheets OpenDocument Spreadsheet (ODS) (.ods), Comma-separated Values (CSV) (.csv) Microsoft Excel (.xls, .xlsx), Adobe Portable Document Format (.pdf), Office Open XML (OOXML) (.docx, .docm)
Databases Structured Query Language (SQL) (.sql), Software Independent Archiving of Relational Databases (SIARD) (.siard), Database tables (.csv) Microsoft Access (.mdb, .accdb), (v. 2000 or later), dBase (.dbf) (v. 7 or later), Hierarchical Data Format 5 (HDF5) (.hdf5, .he5, .h5)
Statistical data Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS/SPSS Portable) (.por, .sav), STATA (.dta), Data Documentation Initiative (DDI) (.xml), data (.csv), setup (.txt) Statistical Analysis System (SAS) (.7bdat; .sd2; .tpt)R(*)
Raster Images Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG) (.jpg, .jpeg), JPEG 2000 (.jp2), Tagged Image File Format (TIFF) (.tif, .tiff), Portable Network Graphics (PNG) (.png) The Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) (.dcm) (by mutual agreement)
Images (vector) Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) (.svg) Adobe Illustrator (.ai), Encapsulated Postscript Vector graphics (Adobe Illustrator) (EPS) (.eps)
Audio Waveform Audio File Format (WAVE/WAV), Broadcast Wave Format (BWF) (.wav), Free Flossless Audio Codec (FLAC) (.flac)
Video Moving Pictures Expert Group-2 (MPEG-2) (.mpg, .mpeg, ...), Moving Pictures Expert Group-4 (MPEG-4 H.264) (.mp4) Lossless Audio Video Interleaved (AVI) (.avi), QuickTime (.mov) Matroska format (MKV) (.mkv)
Computer Aided Design (CAD) AutoCAD Drawing Interchange Format (DXF) v. R12 (.dxf) AutoCAD, other versions (.dwg, .dxf)
Geographical Information (GIS) Geography Markup Language (GML) (.gml), MapInfo Interchange Format (MIF/MID) (.mif/.mid) Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI) Shapefiles (.shp & related files), MapInfo (.tab & related files), Keyhole Markup Language (KML) (.kml)
Images (geo reference) GeoTagged Image File Format (GeoTIFF) (.tif, .tiff) Tagged Image File Format (TIFF) World File (.tfw & .tif)
Raster GIS ASCII GRID (.asc, .txt) ESRI GRID (.grd & related files)
3D WaveFront Object (.obj), Extensible 3D (X3D) (.x3d) COLLADA (.dae), Autodesk Filmbox (FBX) (.fbx)
RDF World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standards
Computer Assisted Qualitative Data Analysis (CAQDAS) Formats used in application, processed according to each individual file’s data type Application’s export formats (ATLAS.TI copy bundle, NVIVO export project; ...), QUALITATIVE DATA EXCHANGE FORMAT (QuDEX)