It can be daunting if you have never written a Data Managment Plan (DMP) before. You may find it useful to look at successful DMPs. The DCC have a list of “real life” DMPs and you also look at examples from UCL. We also have some Southampton DMPs which we can share on request. You may also find the 'Managing Data' online course useful to review the principles.
For those writing a data management plan in support of a grant application, the Research Data team can review your plan before you submit your. We would prefer to have at least two weeks notice before the deadline. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Specific guidance for those writing a DMP for their PhD is available on the Data Plan for your PhD page.
DMPonline is a platform for creating data management plans and provides access to templates for all the major UK and EU funding bodies. We recommend that you use it to create your DMP.
A data management plan is a document that describes:
The carrot: improvements to efficiency, protection, quality and exposure.
Data management in some form is an unavoidable consequence of working with data. Typically data management is done at the last minute and using the first method that comes to mind. This approach is usually time-consuming and error-prone. Taking time at the start of a research project to put in place robust, easy-to-use data management procedures will usually pay off several times over in the later stages of the project. Inadequate data management can also lead to catastrophes like the loss of data or the violation of people's privacy.
The stick: basic data management is required by the University's Research Data Management policy and is recommended in the UKRI, Wellcome and Universities UK Concordat on Open Research Data. Data management is a condition of UKRI funding and is likely to be mandated by other funding bodies, Government and institutions in the near future.
Even if your project funder does not require planning, it may be useful to write a DMP because time spent reflecting on roles and options at the start can save time later and provide additional benefits, for example:
A DMP will bring most benefit if it is referred to and updated throughout the project and viewed as an integral part of the research process.
DCC have a list of “real life” DMPs at http://www.dcc.ac.uk/resources/data-management-plans/guidance-examples
UCL also have a list of DMPs: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/research-support/research-data/policies/writing_DMPlan
We also have some Southampton DMPs which we can share on request.
In 2016 HEFCE, RCUK, Wellcome and Universities UK launched their Concordat on Open Research Data [pdf].
Bookmark this page as http://library.soton.ac.uk/researchdata/planning
If your funder requires you to write a data managment plan (DMP), follow that funder's current advice. If your funder has no specific requirements or your research is unfunded see our taking account of the following:
You may need to store and archive all your data institutionally, or store raw and/or processed data prior to archiving with a specified discipline/funder repository. Different storage options may be effective at different stages of your work. You may want to:
The roles and responsibilities of individual researchers should be defined. Where roles are not clear, you can seek advice from the Associate Dean Research in your Faculty.
You may have more than one audience for your data, particularly if it needs to be made available publicly or through a request process. Embedding the addition of relevant metadata as part of day to day workflow can help you find your own files more effectively and help others find your work and cite it correctly. You may want to:
Full guidance is available on Describing data for effective reuse.
Bookmark this page as http://library.soton.ac.uk/researchdata/whyplan
Ethical guidelines issued by funders and the University cover how you can create, store, share and archive data concerned with human subjects. In addition, laws such as the Data Protection Act 2018, govern the processing of personal data.
You should complete an Initial Data Protection Review (serviceline form) and you may also need to undertake a full Data Protection Impact Assessment. You can find guidance on this process on the Information Governance & Data Protection sharepoint site.
Under the DPA (2018) , you need to have a lawful basis for processing personal data. Academic research conducted at by University has the lawful basis of public task: the University's Charter legally requires the University to undertake education and research.
Even sensitive research data can often be shared legally and ethically by using informed consent, anonymisation and controlled access. In order to be able to do this it is important to consider potential data sharing and re-use scenarios well before the ethics process and data collection. Be explicit in your consent forms and PIS about your plans to make data available, who will be able to access the data, and how the data would be accessed and potentially re-used.
You should also make a clear differentiation between personal data that will be held in confidence and ultimately destroyed, and the deidentified research data that will be retained indefinitely and made available to others. Personal data (for example contact details for participants) should be destroyed when no longer required, and you must tell your participants this. You should not undertake to destroy research data collected from the participants, or not to share such data outside the project, as this may prevent you from using data with future collaborators or in subsequent research investigations.
Consent for participation in research is governed Common Law rather than the DPA (2018).There is no requirement to rely on consent to process data for research purposes. There is an ethical obligation to get consent from people participating in your research but this should not be confused with GDPR consent. GDPR consent under the DPA (2018) can be withdrawn at any time, it has to be granular and time constrained and therefore is unsuitable for most research. To ensure your research is not impacted adversely, we strongly recommend that you do not ask particpants to 'consent' to data usage but instead ask that they understand how the data will be used and shared as part of the conditions for participating in the research. Please contact email@example.com for examples of wording to use in consent forms and participant information sheets.
Most major research funders require some form of documentation at the application stage, to explain how research data will be managed. The DCC keeps a broad list of funder template DMPs including guidance and sample plans.
If you are writing a data management plan in support of a grant application, the Research Data team can review your plan before you submit your. We would prefer to have at least two weeks notice before the deadline. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Funder requirements should followed alongside the existing University Research Data Management Policy.
The UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) Common Principles on Data Policy states that "research data are a public good ...which should be made openly available with as few restrictions as possible in a timely and responsible manner that does not harm intellectual property". Although each Council has developed their own specific policies and requirements to take account of the disciplines involved, there is an expectation that Researchers will:
The University, UKRI, as well as multiple funders and leading publishers have signed the Sharing research data and findings relevant to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak' which follows the WHO recommendations for sharing research in public health emergencies. University researchers are required to:
This means that the interim results underlying papers should be made available but also the final, complete dataset once the project is finished is deposited. The University's preference is that the re-prints and data are best deposited in a disciplinary relevant repository in preference to ePrints Soton. Accepted manuscripts and catalogue records for the datasets held elsewhere should still be deposited in our own institutional repository.
Most research funders have issued data policies:
Bookmark this page as http://library.soton.ac.uk/researchdata/funderguidance
If your funder requires you to write a data management plan (DMP), follow that funder's current advice. If your funder has no specific requirements or your research is unfunded, this checklist is for you.
Click on heading for more details.
A more detailed checklist is available from the Digital Curation Centre DMP checklist
Bookmark this page as http://library.soton.ac.uk/researchdata/topten
It can be daunting if you have never written a DMP before. You may find it useful to look at successful DMPs:
"Metadata records for the data (and published outputs) will also be maintained on the University of Southampton Institutional Research Repository. In accordance with the University’s Data policy, the data will be archived from a minimum of ten years after publication or last access, whichever is longer (see http://www.calendar.soton.ac.uk/sectionIV/research-data-management.html). DOIs will be issued for the dataset and data subsets as per the University’s DOI policy (see http://library.soton.ac.uk/identifiers/doipolicy)."
"Future users of the data will be bound by data sharing agreements. Where suitable a licence (currently Creative Commons) can be applied to data deposited in the repository."
"All data generated will immediately be transferred and stored in the University of Southampton iSolutions secure research data storage service. The data stored within this facility is regularly backed up and a copy of the back-up, regularly off-sited to a secure location for disaster recovery purposes. Only authorised users can access data stored within this facility and it is managed under the governance of the University of Southampton Research Data Management Policy (http://www.calendar.soton.ac.uk/sectionIV/research-data-management.html)"
"The University of Southampton will hold copyright in the primary data generated by the research throughout the project. The University will also hold the copyright in any database created to collate already published data, however if necessary consent will be sought and acknowledgment will be provided to third parties who may retain rights over some of the data used."
“The University hold Cyber Essentials certification and is working towards the principles outlined in ISO27001.”
Data Management Policy & Procedures
The following guidance supports the policy and can be quoted in DMPs:
Other University policies related to data sharing:
Bookmark this page as http://library.soton.ac.uk/researchdata/dmpexamples