Every research project that involves the collection and use of research data should have a data management plan (DMP). This is a structured document describing how data will be created, managed and used during the life of a research project, and beyond with plans for data sharing and preservation.
A DMP can enable you and your project team to work efficiently, to identify requirements and manage risks, and to apply appropriate solutions. DMPs are required at LSBU for all externally funded research projects and for doctoral students at the RES2 stage.
You may have been required to submit a DMP as part of a grant application, and this can be a useful starting point for project planning, but the DMP that is a practical instrument for your project will still need to be developed. The project and data management requirements can change over time.
DMPs should be different for each project, as projects rarely have exactly the same requirements as each other!
Some examples of DMPs can be found on the Digital Curation Centre website.
You should use a DMP template to structure your plan and ensure you cover all aspects of data management. When writing a grant application, the funder will often provide a template for the plan.
Not all funders provide a DMP template, and if that is the case then you should use LSBU’s DMP template. Your project page should have an option to add a Data Management Plan which will take you through LSBU’s standard DMP. It may be that when you start the project that you want to update your plan from the one in the application, and you can use LSBU’s template.
Funder templates can also be found on DMPOnline, which also gives the option to share your draft plan.
Creating a project DMP means that it will work for you – it needs to be tailored to be something that you can follow, not just re-using a plan from elsewhere!
Funders have a range of requirements around Open Research and Data Management Planning. Here are some summaries of what different funders require from researchers at LSBU.