Open access to data is dependent on good data management

A data management plan is a support in the research process, and facilitates the documentation of data before, during and after a research study. The Swedish Research Council has developed a template for data management plans, with an accompanying guide.

Good data management is a key component of open access to research data. Using a data management plan (DMP), researchers can describe how data that are collected and/or created will be managed during the course of the research, and how they will be taken care of afterwards.

The data management plan is intended to be a support in the research process, to facilitate the documentation of data before, during and after a research study. In particular, it is intended to be a support for the researcher and research team to document the various central data management elements and issues in a structured way, and thereby facilitate the planning, implementation, and future use of and access to research data.

The Swedish Research Council’s template for data management plans

The Swedish Research Council recommends that the template for data management plans produced by the Swedish Research Council and the Association of Swedish Higher Education Institutions (SUHF) is used.

The template for data management plans is based on the ‘basic requirements’ set by Science Europe, and contains six sections that a data management plan should describe. The template can, as necessary, be expanded with more questions to make local or discipline-specific adaptations.

Guide to using the template

To support and complement the template, an accompanying guide has been produced. The purpose of the guide is to increase the understanding of the guiding questions in the template.

The guide can be used by researchers, but the primary target group is research-supporting functions that support the researchers’ work with data management plans. The guide may also be of use when producing local or discipline-specific adaptations.

Guide to the template for data management plans (in Swedish)

Digital tool for data management plans

Sunet’s range of products and services includes a digital tool for data management plans. This is one of several possible alternatives that higher education institutions can use as support for producing and maintaining data management plans.

Read more about the service on Sunet’s website External link.

Frequently asked questions about data management plans

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