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Research Data Management

Introductory information and links for deeper investigation on research data management topics. Guide 3 of a 3-part series.

Specific Funders DMP Expectations

NIH (National Institutes of Health)

Effective January 25, 2023 the NIH Data Management & Sharing Policy is in effect which requires researches seeking NIH funding to prospectively submit a plan outlining how scientific data from their research will be managed and shared. Researchers should "maximize the appropriate sharing of scientific data" and data should be shared as soon as possible; no later than the time of an associated publication or end of performance period (whichever comes first). And the plan should represent the minimum requirements, but more may be expected.

NSF (National Science Foundation) (NSF 23-1: Effective for proposals submitted or due on or after January 30, 2023)

Preparing Your Data Management Plan. Proposals 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. Data management plans are included as part of the merit review process. The link includes general guidance as well as links to more specific guidance from NSF directorates and programs. Costs can be included in the budget as direct costs. Post-approval monitoring of your plan is done as part of the Annual Report and Final Grant Report process.

DOE (Department of Energy)

DOE policy for digital research data management involves all stages of the digital data lifecycle including capture, analysis, sharing, and preservation.  The focus of this statement is Data Sharing and Data Preservation of Digital Research Data. Data sharing means making data available to people other than those who have generated them. Examples of data sharing range from bilateral communications with colleagues, to providing free, unrestricted access to the public through, for example, a web-based platform.

NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration)

Each organization funded by NASA to produce, archive and/or distribute data is required to prepare a Data Management Plan (DMP) and to maintain the DMP as a living document by reviewing it periodically and ensuring that the plan is up-to-date.

NEA (National Endowment for the Arts)

"To help build capacity and continuity for such research in subsequent years, we require applicants to submit a data management plan documenting how any raw data and meta-data resulting from the proposed project will be used and maintained during and beyond the life of the award. Applicants should discuss confidentiality, security, intellectual property, or other relevant rights or requirements (to include but not be limited to securing and handling / deidentification of Protected Health Information (PHI) and Personally Identifiable Information (PII))."

NEH (National Endowment for the Humanities)

"Nelson Memo" from the Office of Science and Technology (est. August 2022)

Holdren memo (2013) issued by President Obama. Directed federal agencies with over $100 annually to make research published as result of those grants publicly accessible with 12 months. The Nelson Memo updates Holdren for all federal agencies regardless of size. Issued without input to stakeholders or a comment period. This is more suggestive and less directive than Holdren memo.

8 Key Points of the Nelson Memo (OhioLINK Michael Clarke on the OSTP Memo Webinar)
  1. Zero Embargo - Scholarly publications supported by federal funding must be made publicly accessible immediately upon publications, no embargo. It's not clear if this includes author accepted manuscript or final, published version. Also not clear if this includes editorials, conference proceedings, or book chapters. Not sure who will reinforce this policy at this time. And not sure who will make deposits into agency-approved repositories.
  2. Unfunded Mandate - Researchers can use federal grant funds for publication charges, but no additional funds available to agencies or researchers, as of yet. Researchers will need to factor publication costs into further grant budgets.
  3. "Public access" not "open access" - The Memo requests that agencies determine the “circumstances or prerequisites needed to make the publications freely and publicly available by default, included use and re-use rights, and which restrictions and including attribution may apply.” Decision left up to agencies to decide and reuse licenses as of now not required.
  4. All authors, not just corresponding authors. Not sure how this will work. What about one author that is federally funded, but collaborators are not? Will this apply to papers that a researcher wishes to include in grant applications and status reports or will there be other reinforcement?
  5. Immediate public access to data - underlying research data should be made publicly accessible upon publication of the corresponding research paper. Leads to question about where will data be deposited? What formats? Long—term support and software standards change? Will publishers check this? How will this be paid for? 
  6. New metadata requirements - All federal grants will be required to use unique, persistent identifiers. Requires research output (data) to use unique, persistent identifiers. Requires publicly accessible metadata associated with research papers, including; all authors, affiliations, source funding, and date. Who will issue the persistent identifiers? How will they be managed?
    • See ORCiD as an option for approved author unique identifier.
  7. Agencies given wide latitude - Agencies to submit implementation plans to OSTP and OMB within 180 days. Agencies will determine reuse requirements (like CC-BY, more about Creative Commons licenses here), version deposit requirements, repository requirements, and which content types (e.g. conference proceedings, editorials, etc.) the policy applies to. Agencies will also determine details regarding data deposit and availability requirements.
  8. Implementation by 2026 - Applies to grants issued starting in 2026. Publications effected by this may not be seen until 2027.