Digital Data Management, Curation, and Archiving

Data Policies & Guidelines

Below are federal agency and other funder guidelines for data management planning and sharing. In contrast to Public Access Plans, within which requirements and additional details may be pending, the policies below are currently in effect.

Agencies and sponsors are listed in alphabetical order.

Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

The description of research methods for proposals submitted to the Sloan Foundation must address multiple aspects of research data management and sharing, including:

  • How will data and code be shared, annotated, cited, and archived?
  • Plans or strategies to make findings reproducible by other researchers.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have annouced an Open Access policy that is in effect for all new agreements beginning January 1, 2015. Notably, after a two year transition period, publisher embargoes will not be allowed after January 1, 2017. Other aspects of the policy include:

Details are available from the Foundation's website: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Open Access Policy

Department of Defense Data Sharing Policy

Per the DoD Public Access plan: Data underlying the conclusions of peer-reviewed journal publications will be made freely available at the time of the initial publication.

Note however that this applies to unclassified, publicly releasable data and, more specifically, data underlying peer-reviewed journal publications. It is understood that much DoD sponsored research will involve sensitive, classified data.

Department of Education

From the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) Policy Statement on Data Sharing in IES Research Centers:

Data sharing provides opportunities for other researchers to review, confirm or challenge study findings, which is an important aspect of the scientific process. In addition, data sharing can enhance scientific inquiry through a variety of other analytic activities, including the use of shared data to: test alternative theories or hypotheses; explore different sets of research questions than those targeted by the original researchers; combine data from multiple sources to provide potential new insights and areas of inquiry; and/or conduct methodological studies to advance education research methods and statistical analyses.

Department of Energy

The Office of Science affirms that the following principles related to the management of digital research data directly support fulfillment of its mission.

  • Effective data management has the potential to increase the pace of scientific discovery and promote more efficient and effective use of government funding and resources. Data management planning should be an integral part of research planning.
  • Sharing and preserving data are central to protecting the integrity of science by facilitating validation of results and to advancing science by broadening the value of research data to disciplines other than the originating one and to society at large. To the greatest extent and with the fewest constraints possible, and consistent with the requirements and other principles of this Statement, data sharing should make digital research data available to and useful for the scientific community, industry, and the public. 
  • Not all data need to be shared or preserved. The costs and benefits of doing so should be considered in data management planning.

Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation

Since 2008, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation has promoted a philosophy of Open Access and public data sharing. Specific principles include:

  • All data used in or developed in whole or in part by foundation funded projects will be made widely available and freely shared as soon as possible.
  • The foundation and prospective grantees will jointly develop a Data Management and Sharing Plan prior to the finalization of a grant agreement.

National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Earth Science Data and Information Policy:

NASA promotes the full and open sharing of all data with the research and applications communities, private industry, academia, and the general public. The greater the availability of the data, the more quickly and effectively the user communities can utilize the information to address basic Earth science questions and provide the basis for developing innovative practical applications to benefit the general public.

Stated principles include:

  • There will be no period of exclusive access to NASA Earth science data. Following a post-launch checkout period, all data will be made available to the user community. Any variation in access will result solely from user capability, equipment, and connectivity.
  • NASA will make available all NASA-generated standard products along with the source code for algorithm software, coefficients, and ancillary data used to generate these products.
  • All NASA Earth science missions, projects, and grants and cooperative agreements shall include data management plans to facilitate the implementation of these data principles.

From the ROSES-2014:

NASA intends for the Data Management Plan to become a living document; successful proposers will be requested to update their Data Management Plan annually as to the status of and schedule for data set production, sharing, and archive. (ROSES-2014, p 117)

National Endowment for the Humanities

NEH Office of Digital Humanities DMP requirements are closely modeled after those specified by the NSF Directorate for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences (NSF-SBE).

National Institute of Justice

With limited exceptions, the NIJ "requires data sets resulting from funded research to be archived with the National Archive of Criminal Justice Data (NACJD)." Data sets must also be submitted 90 days before the end of the project (http://www.nij.gov/funding/data-resources-program/applying/pages/data-archiving-strategies.aspx).

Applications to the NIJ for research funding must include a 1-2 page data archiving plan submitted as an appendix to the application.

National Institutes of Health

Goals of Data Sharing:

In NIH's view, all data should be considered for data sharing. Data should be made as widely and freely available as possible while safeguarding the privacy of participants, and protecting confidential and proprietary data. To facilitate data sharing, investigators submitting a research application requesting $500,000 or more of direct costs in any single year to NIH on or after October 1, 2003 are expected to include a plan for sharing final research data for research purposes, or state why data sharing is not possible.

Genomic Data Sharing Policy

On August 26, 2014, the NIH policy on genomic data sharing was published in the Federal Register. An updated NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts was similarly published the following day, with the impact that all funding applications submitted on or after January 25, 2015 will be required to include data-sharing plans that meet the expectations of the policy. This includes the expectation that researchers will obtain informed consent of human subjects for the potential future use and sharing of data while implementing measure to protect private and sensitive data.

National Institute of Standards and Technology

Beginning October, 2014, NIST requires the submission of a Data Management Plan for all funded research. As described in the NIST Public Access Plan released in April, 2015, the DMP will describe how scientific data resulting from the research will be shared and preserved. Alternatively, researchers may provide some rationale for why data sharing and preservation are beyond the scope of their plan. Submitted DMP's should at a minimum provide:

  • A summary of activities that generate data.
  • A summary of data types generate by the activities.
  • Plans for storing and preserving data.
  • Plans describing whether and how data will be made publicly accessible.

National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration

From NOAA's Data Management Procedural Directive:

NOAA Administrative Order (NAO) 212‐15, Management of Environmental Data and Information, states that environmental data is to be managed based upon a lifecycle that includes developing and following a data management plan...The goal of the Data Management plan is to ensure that data are properly collected, documented, made accessible, and preserved for future use in a NOAA Data Center or other longterm archive facility.

National Science Foundation

Data Sharing Policy:

Investigators are expected to share with other researchers, at no more than incremental cost and within a reasonable time, the primary data, samples, physical collections and other supporting materials created or gathered in the course of work under NSF grants. Grantees are expected to encourage and facilitate such sharing.

Data Management Plan Requirements

Proposals submitted or due on or after January 18, 2011, must include a supplementary document of no more than two pages labeled “Data Management Plan”. This supplementary document should describe how the proposal will conform to NSF policy on the dissemination and sharing of research results.

US Geological Survey

From the USGS Data Management website:

The USGS Instructional Memoradum IM OSQI 2015-001 - Foundation Data Policy establishes requirements for data management plans:

  • "Plan. The overall project work plan of every research project must include planning for data management (SM 502.2). A data management plan describes standards and intended actions for acquiring, processing, analyzing, preserving, publishing/sharing, describing, managing quality, backing up, and securing the data holdings (http://www.usgs.gov/datamanagement/plan.php). The data management plan, like the work plan, should be updated during the research phase to reflect the reality of the project activities."

DMP Tool Online

A good resource for developing any data management plan is the DMP Tool Online.

By selecting University of New Mexico from the drop down list on the sign in page, you will be able to access templates created by our Data Librarians, as well links to UNM specific recommendations and resources.

Sample Data Management Plans