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Research Data Management: Storage Costs

Guidance and support to staff, researchers and students at the University of Southampton

Costs of Data Retention

The largest share of costs for data are incurred in preparation and ingest to the selected storage service, as shown by the costing tool provided by the UK Data Archive. Extended data retention periods may have some additional costs that will impact your project directly or they may be covered by the full economic costing included in your proposal.  Invariably data retention periods will outlive projects, so you may want to consider how this will be funded as part of your data management plan and/or in your proposal – check with your funder’s guidelines.

Over time costs will be incurred for storage, typically based on the volume of data stored for a given retention period, and for additional services, for example active data management such as reformatting to counter possible format obsolescence. The latter is now regarded as less of a problem for popular formats, but may need to be considered for specialised data formats.

In some cases the costs and benefits of data storage and retention decisions may need to be assessed and justified for funding purposes. The KRDS (Keeping Research Data Safe) Benefits Analysis Toolkit may be used for this.

Useful Links - Costs

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