What is a Data Management Plan?
A Data Management Plan (DMP) is a document used to help improve overall management practices and is conducted at the beginning of the research process. It is used for the management of data throughout the duration of the project from start to finish. A DMP states the methodologies on how the data will be produced and the format it will be stored in, whether the data is subject to ethical, commercial or Intellectual Property Rights, how the data will be shared and the provisions for long term data preservation. In addition, the DMP should include what type of data and metadata will be produced, who will have access to the data, how data management practices will be enforced e.g. organising, storing, archiving, publishing etc. what hardware or software will be used together with who will be delegated to perform each task.
Does all research require a data management plan?
It is encouraged that grant holders should be required to develop and implement a DMP. For a comprehensive list on what individual funders require, please see Funders’ data plan requirements.
For further information see DCC guidance on data management plans:
DCC Data Management Plans
When do I start writing my data management plan?
In most circumstances you would be expected to start preparing your DMP during the initial research proposal and development stages. The DMP would then be submitted along with your research proposal. It must be noted that the DMP is meant to be a guidleine on data management and must be constantly updated during the course of research in-line with any changes which occur. It however is only required to be submitted once during the initial stages of the project.
DMPonline has been developed by the Digital Curation Centre to help you write data management plans.