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Research Data Management

This guide provides an overview of Research Data Management services and resources at Dalhousie University.

Why create a data management plan?

How to avoid a data management nightmare, by Karen Hanson, Kevin Read & Alisa Surkis, New York University Health Sciences Library. Creative Commons Licence CC-BY (Attribution, reuse allowed)

This 4:40 minute video case study walks through what can go wrong without a plan and standards.


Why do you need a data management plan?

  • To ensure that your data will be accessible and usable in the future - by you and by others.
  • Create and maintain a permanent archive of the data that supports your research findings.
  • To meet publisher and/or funding agency requirements for data availability.

What is in a data management plan?

  • Description of the types of data that will be collected or produced (eg. survey results, lab tests, samples, physical objects, manuscripts, computer log files.
  • Plan for collectingstoring (short & long-term) your data, and backup copies.
  • Standards you will use for your data collection and how you will describe your data (metadata). For example, if you have a team doing field measurements, your data plan will include methods for how your team will record the same measurements. See "How to avoid a data management nightmare" video for an example of how this can go wrong.
  • Policies for sharing, accessing, and re-using your data, including provisions for privacy, confidentiality, security, intellectual property, or other rights or requirements.
  • Methods for archiving and preserving your data.