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What does LSE and your research funder expect?

What does LSE expect?

  • From October 2016 LSE requires all funded research to have a Data Management Plan.
  • LSE recognises the value of data as an asset in its own right and its management as integral to good research practice.
  • That data be managed to, at a minimum, meet research funder and academic journal expectations on data sharing and long-term preservation.
  • The School's Research Data Management policy, associated policies and strategies in the School underpin LSE expectations regarding data.

The School's Research Data Management Policy  recognises data generated by researchers are valuable assets in their own right and that researchers who use or create data in the process of their research have a responsibility to manage effectively data, whether original or derived.

From October 2016, in order to comply with research data security recommendations, all researchers will be asked to submit a Data Management Plan (DMP) for any funded research. This can include Data Management Plans submitted as part of a research funding application. 

Consistent with expectations of research funders, academic journals, and other statements on Research Data Management and data sharing, this is seen as an integral component of good research practice. Researchers should wherever practicable and at a minimum meet research funder expectations and academic journal policies on Data Management Plans, data sharing, and long-term preservation of research data.

A number of existing policies and strategies already approved and enacted by the School underpin LSE expectations of how researchers should manage research data effectively.

What does you research funder expect?

Read advice on what research funders expect those in receipt of grants for research to do with research data. If your funder is not listed here please get in touch with the Data Librarian

Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)

Do I have to write a DMP?

Yes. AHRC require a Data Management Plan. AHRC guidance states: "it is for the applicants to decide how detailed the proposal will need to be."

What does it want?

The AHRC expect a document titled "Data Management Plan" that outlines how the project will look after data. Specifically the AHRC will want to know:

Types of data the research will create and why they are used.

1.       Methodologies to create data and how the project team's suitability for managing data, including institutional support consulted (for example. LSE Library, IMT Information Security, Data Protection, Research Ethics).

2.       Working storage. Capacity is in place to securely store data and ensure it is not lost.

3.       Long-term preservation. Depositing data in a specified archive or archive at the end of the award and why this is an appropriate choice. If data is not to be preserved long-term, provide justification with evidence of having considered alternative data sharing options, such as restrictive licences or secure data services must be provided.

4.       How data will be shared and its value to others. Specify, a schedule for releasing data. Justify deviation from AHRC guidelines of a minimum of three years. State if data need to be updated and how it will be done. Mention if there is a cost for data access and, if so, justify charging.

5.       Ethical and Legal considerations. Legal (particularly data protection legislation) and ethical considerations in collecting data and sharing data. Focus on informed consent procedures, anonymisation, and licence restrictions on reuse.

6.       The plan should be written in size 11 Arial or Times New Roman font with normal 2 cm margins and entitled Data Management Plan. The DMP can be up to a maximum of two pages long. The file should be named: "Surname_DMP".

By submitting a DMP you confirm you consulted institutional support in (where appropriate) research data management, information security, research ethics, and data protection - including reading institutional policies.

AHRC expect DMPs be revisited during an award and as long as required after the project to take into account potential changes in for instance technology/IP/institutional data policy/copyright to ensure legal compliance.

What about costs?

AHRC state: “Costs related to long term storage will be permitted providing these are fully justified and relate to the project".

When do I have to do it?

As part of the funding application.

What else should I read?

AHRC Data Management Plan – text for funding guide


Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)

Do I have to write a DMP?

No. The EPSRC do not require a DMP as part of a funding proposal. But…

EPSRC expects data sharing and long-term preservation. Specifically, data underpinning publications must be available for up to 10 years from the date the data becomes available or after the last request for access. They also require information (metadata) “sufficient to allow others to understand what research data exists, why, when and how it was generated, and how to access it” to be freely available via the internet. If digital, the data should also be accessible through a “robust digital object identifier”.

Should I write a DMP?

Yes. EPSRC does not require DMPs to be submitted with research grant applications but one of their research data principles states “…project specific data management policies and plans… …should exist for all data”

A DMP will help you identify a suitable archive or repository that can provide long-term storage and accessibility, provide the structure for EPSRC standard metadata, and provide a robust identifier. A plan will also allow you scope to identify and address any commercial, legal, or ethical issues that would prevent the data being made available for reuse. It will also identify individual and institutional responsibilities for meeting the EPSRC’s expectations.

How can I write a DMP then?

The DCC’s DMPonline tool includes an EPSRC tailored DMP.

What about costs?

Highlight potential storage and management costs in your budget.

What else should I read?

European Research Council (ERC)

Do I have to write a DMP?

No. However, the ERC supports the basic principle of Open Access to research data and recommends researchers retain and be prepared to share data. The ERC are also working on a set of data sharing protocols and appropriate repositories for depositing data.

What about costs?

ERC currently claim article publication open access fees are eligible costs that can be charged against ERC grants, provided they have been incurred during the duration of the project.

What else should I read?

Open Access Guidelines for researchers funded by the ERC [PDF] 

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)

Do I have to write a Data Management Plan?

Yes, if your project involves data (defined as “primary input into research and first order results of that research”). No, if your project does not involve data or you are applying for a studentship, although you are still encouraged to write one.

What does the ESRC require?

  • explanation of existing data sources that will be used by the research project
  • analysis of the gaps identified between currently available and required data
  • information on data produced by the research project and it’s type (qualitative or quantitative)
  • measures to ensure quality: formats, standards, documentation and metadata
  • methodologies for collection
  • intended quality assurance and back-up procedures [security/storage]
  • plans for management and archiving of data with UK Data Service
  • identification of expected difficulties in data sharing, along with and causes and possible measures to overcome these difficulties
  • mention of consent, confidentiality, anonymisation and other ethical considerations
  • clarity on copyright and intellectual property ownership of the data
  • specified responsibilities for data management and curation within research team

What about costs?

ESRC will fund RDM costs included in the DMP.

When do I have to do it?

As part of your Je-S application.

What else should I read?

Horizon 2020

Do I have to write a DMP?

Maybe. The Commission has an Open Research Data Pilot that means proposals submitted to:

  • Future and Emerging Technologies
  • Research infrastructures – part e-Infrastructures
  • Leadership in enabling and industrial technologies – Information and Communication Technologies
  • Societal Challenge: 'Secure, Clean and Efficient Energy' – part Smart cities and communities
  • Societal Challenge: 'Climate Action, Environment, Resource Efficiency and Raw materials' – except raw materials
  • Societal Challenge: 'Europe in a changing world – inclusive, innovative and reflective Societies'
  • Science with and for Society

Must include a section on RDM evaluated under the criterion “Impact”. Proposals outside the pilot areas are 'invited' to submit a DMP.

From 2017 the Commission requires that all projects implement a Data Management Plan. The Commission also expects data to comply with FAIR data principles (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, Reuseable) and be 'open by default' unless arguments for exemptions are made where sensitive commercial, personal data, or classified security information are used.

What does the Commission require?

The Commission provide a template in Annex 1 that covers:

  • Description of data, origin (in case it is collected), nature, scale, mention of to whom it could be useful, and whether it underpins a scientific publication. Plus, information on the existence (or not) of similar data and the possibilities for integration and reuse.
  • Reference to existing suitable metadata standards in the discipline or if they don’t exist, an outline on how and what metadata will be created.
  • Data sharing, addressing access procedures, potential embargo periods, outline of technical mechanisms for dissemination and necessary software and other tools for enabling re-use. Definition provided of whether access will be open or restricted. If the data cannot be fully shared, reasons should be provided.
  • Procedures for long-term preservation of the data. Identifying the repository where and type of repository (institutional, standard repository for the discipline, etc.) data will be stored. Indication of how long the data should be preserved, what is its approximated end volume, and identification of what the associated costs are and how these are intended to be covered.

What about costs? 

The Commission will reimburse data management costs for projects participating in the Open Research Data Pilot.

When do I have to do it?

An initial version of the DMP is expected within the first six months of the project. The Commission expect 'more elaborated versions' of the DMP by the mid-term and final review 'fine-tuned' to data generated. The Commission also expects new versions of the DMP whenever important changes to the project occur. Suggestions for additional information in these more elaborated versions are provided in Annex 2.

What else should I read?

Leverhulme Trust

Do I have to write a DMP?

No. Leverhulme make no stipulations regarding mandatory archiving for grant holders or mention a requirement to produce a DMP.

Should I write a DMP anyway?

Yes. A DMP will help with effective creation, management and sharing of data, especially important if journals you plan on publishing in have a data sharing policy. A plan will also allow you scope to identify and address any commercial, legal, or ethical issues that would prevent the data being made available for reuse. It will also identify individual and institutional responsibilities meeting.

How can I do it?

The DCC’s DMPonline tool.