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Research Data Management

Sharing good practices for Research Data Management

Why Data Management Plan Matters

Data Management Plan (DMP) is a formal document to describe how you will collect, manage, describe, preserve, and share your research data at the start of a research project.

More and more funding agencies are requiring researchers to prepare a DMP at the proposal stage. This helps to ensure the valuable data collected in the funded projects can be reused by other research groups, thus maximizing the return on investment for the funded projects. 
As articles with openly accessible data usually attract more citations, many journal publishers also require researchers to deposit the supporting data of their articles in an open repository in order to enhance the visibility and impact of the papers they published. Preparing a DMP for your research project is the first step to prepare your research data before depositing it in a data repository.

Even though a written DMP is not compulsory, it can be a valuable tool to help you in the following ways:

  A Useful reference for yourself

DMP can serve as a document to assist you in planning and making decisions on issues about managing research data.

  Continuity of research work for the whole team

DMP helps to ensure consistent practice in the handling of data among all project members should there be changes in the future.

  Facilitate data sharing with others

DMP allows you to plan, during the initial stages of your project, about data format, structure, storage, and sharing of data. Thus facilitating easier sharing data and other research materials with your collaborators and other potential users.

Good Practices for DMP

Here are some good practices in preparing a DMP:

Prepare your DMP earlier

DMP is best prepared at the beginning of your research project. However, it is never too late to start mid-way during the research process - better late than never.

DMP is a dynamic document

You should review your DMP regularly and not be afraid to revisit, update, and improve it according to the actual needs as the project progresses.

DMP does not need to be complex

You should keep it practical and simple, enough to reflect how you want to manage your data.

You can also make use of available online tools to easily create your DMP with ease.

Deal with length constraint

Some funders may have length constraints on DMP. You can make use of your funder's DMP as an outline while expanding other areas with more information for the team's own reference.

Elaborate on how to execute the DMP

It is good to quote policies in DMP, but it is more important to state the exact way in which you will implement the policies.

Seek advice from your peers

DMP can be enhanced through collaboration. You can gain valuable comments to improve your DMP with a second reviewer.

DMP Examples

Below are some DMP examples you may refer to. We also encourage you to explore the major DMP components for a better understanding of what constitutes a good DMP.


Data Policies & DMP Requirements