Data Management Plans
PRI and the PSU main libraries can help you prepare and implement a data management plan.
Your obligation to share data
As of 2011, recipients of federal grants are required to make their research data available to the research community (see details below). As part of the application process, data management and sharing plans, detailing how and where the data will be stored and shared, are a required at submission. PRI and Penn State have multiple resources to help you draft a comprehensive plan and enable data sharing.
How to make your data available
The Penn State Libraries have developed a Data Management Plan Toolkit for use by all PSU researchers. They are also offering consultation to those researchers who would like assistance in drafting their plans.
The Libraries have also developed ScholarSphere, a secure repository service enabling the Penn State community to share its research and scholarly work with a worldwide audience. Faculty, staff, and students can use ScholarSphere to collect their work in one location and create a durable and citeable record of their papers, publications, presentations, datasets, or other scholarly creations. Through this service, Penn State researchers can also comply with grant-funding-agency requirements for sharing and managing research data.
Another resource available to PSU researchers is the California Digital Library's DMP Tool. This tool allows users to select the specific funder and solicitation for which they are preparing a data management plan, and then walks the user through each section of that solicitation's requirements. Guidance from the funders is offered for each section and when available, PSU specific guidance will also be given. Users complete each required section and can then print a complete data management plan. Sharing options are also offered for those researchers who may be drafting a proposal with collaborators. To access the tool, select Penn State from the institution drop-down list and log in with your PSU access id and password.
A tutorial on tips for drafting data management plans and how to use the DMP Tool may be found on the DMP Tool website.
The Data Sharing for Demographic Research project has developed an excellent guide to take you through the process. Whether you are collecting original data or have added value to existing data, consult the Data Sharing for Demographic Research project's Data Producers resources for an excellent guide to making your data available.
NIH and NSF Guidelines
National Institutes of Health (NIH): The NIH expects final research data, especially unique data, from NIH-supported research to be made available to other researchers, as stated in the NIH Data Sharing Policy.
Scientists submitting grant, cooperative, or contract applications should include a data-sharing plan, or provide justification for the absence of such a plan, in a brief paragraph to be placed immediately after the Research Plan Section (i.e., immediately after PHS 398 Section I. Letters of Support in the Research Plan Section of their application) so it does not count toward the application page limit.
National Science Foundation (NSF):
All NSF proposals submitted or due on or after January 18, 2011 must include a supplementary document that provides for a “Data Management Plan”. The NSF Data Sharing Policy and related requirements are available on the NSF website http://www.nsf.gov/bfa/dias/policy/dmp.jsp. To assist our NSF investigators with complying with these new requirements, please find attached a memo summarizing the requirements and a listing of available resources that may be of assistance. This memorandum was directly emailed to all active Penn State NSF investigators. As additional resources become available, they will posted at following url: https://www.research.psu.edu/osp/documents/proposal/NSF-DataManagement.pdf .
Note that the NSF Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences Directorate also has specific requirements for Data Management.
[The NSF] expects PIs to share with other researchers, at no more than incremental cost and within a reasonable time, the data, samples, physical collections and other supporting materials created or gathered in the course of the work.
PSU and federal policies/guidelines to consider
- Federal Health Insurance Privacy and Portability Act (HIPAA) Privacy Rule
- Guidelines provided by the Pennsylvania State University's Responsible Conduct of Research Program
- Federal Committee on Statistical Methodology's Checklist on Disclosure Potential of Proposed Data Releases.