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Data plan overview

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06/07/2018 - 1:23pm

Data Plan Overview

What IS a data plan?

Data plans for a study or project should include:

  • a complete description of data that produced and kept
  • an indication of how long data will be stored
  • a thorough description of storage environment
  • a description of how data will be made available
  • an explanation of how data will be formatted and described for reuse and interpretation
  • clear policies around data access, use, and attribution/copyright

For further information about data plan content, see the individual sponsor's guidelines and the specific Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA).



What constitutes “data” covered by a Data Management Plan?

What constitutes such data will be determined by the community of interest through the process of peer review and program management. This may include, but is not limited to: data, publications, samples, physical collections, software and models.

Is a plan for Data Management required if my project is not expected to generate data or samples?

Yes. It is acceptable to state in the Data Management Plan that the project is not anticipated to generate data or samples that require management and/or sharing. PIs should note that the statement will be subject to peer review.



Resource Description

Preserving Your Digital Heritage


UW-Madison guide for planning to preserve digital collections from the humanities and interpretive social sciences


Data Management and Publishing


Resource page from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution


Digital Preservation Management


The Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) tutorial on data preservation 


Escaping Datageddon


UW-Madison presentation on data-management essentials


IMLS Requirements for Projects that Develop Digital Products


The Institute of Museum and Library Sciences' resources for developing digital products


NEH Data Management Plan Requirements


The National Endowment for the Humanities-Office of Digital Humanities' data management plan requirements


NIH Data Sharing Policy and Implementation Guidance


The National Institutes of Health policy statement on data sharing and additional information on the implementation of this policy

The FAQ includes answers to the most commonly asked questions about data management plans

NOAA Data Sharing Procedural Directive


The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's data sharing policy for grants and cooperative agreements

The FAQ includes answers to the most commonly asked questions about data management plans


NSF Dissemination and Sharing of Research Results


The National Science Foundation's data sharing policy and DMP requirements. Includes links to directorate-specific requirements

The FAQ includes answers to the most commonly asked questions about data management plans