A data management plan describes the data that will be authored and how the data will be managed and made accessible throughout its lifetime. The contents of the data management plan should include:
Most federal agencies and many private funders require data management plans (DMP) in award proposals. Some scholarly publishers also require researchers to make their research data publicly available.
Data management plans (DMPs) are documents prepared by researchers as they are designing a project and writing a funding proposal. DMPs typically include:
Here are some useful sites that provide details on what should go into a DMP:
The DMPTool is a collaborative effort between multiple institutions, including DataONE, to streamline the management planning process. Anyone can create a data management plan using the DMPTool. A login is required to access the “wizard”, so you will want to set up an account with a username and password you create.
A real bonus is that the DMPTool site offers a useful collection of agency-specific DMP requirements, as well as sample agency-specific plans to help you with your plan. It also provides a list of many public DMPs that serve as models. Why re-invent the wheel?
One good thing is that there are many templates and models to work from. The DMPTool (above) walks researchers through DMP creation. But it is helpful to look at what other researchers have done to get an overall feel for the end product.
Here are links to sample data management plans. Please note that these plans were developed to serve the particular needs of the project's investigators, funding agencies, designated user communities, and other stakeholders. The needs and requirements for your data will likely be different. You should take care to develop a data management plan that addresses your project directly. Finally, note that these examples are fully developed and active data management plans and not the 2-page summary required by the NSF and other funding agencies.