How to Create a Data Management Plan

Grant proposal season is upon us. Increasingly, writing a grant proposal also means writing a data management plan that details how data will be managed, preserved, and shared after a funded project ends. The Scholarly Communication Department offers a Data Management Planning service and works directly with PIs, grant writers, and administrators to create plans that align with funder requirements.

Why are data management plans required?

In February of 2013, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy released a memo entitled “Increasing Access to the Results of Federally Funded Scientific Research.” This memo mandated that all federal agencies with over $100 million in annual conduct of research and development expenditures develop a plan for public access to research output. Data management plans, previously required only in some circumstances by some federal agencies, became widespread. By October 2016, all federal agencies meeting these criteria had implemented public access policies. These public access policies hinge on the precept that research funded by taxpayer dollars should be made available to the public, industry, and research community.

Why can’t I preserve data with my funding agency?

The 2013 OSTP memo was an unfunded mandate. This contributed to a landscape of distributed solutions provided by many stakeholders in academic research. Commercial publishers, universities, non profits, and government data centers all worked to support researchers working to comply with new data sharing guidelines. In some cases, individual directorates/divisions will provide or endorse a data repository, for example the Arctic Data Center for NSF-funded science on the Arctic, or GenBank, the NIH genetic sequence database. In other cases, researchers are expected to use their discretion in selecting an appropriate data sharing solution.

Where do I find data management plan requirements?

Indiana University is a member of the DMPTool, a tool that walks users through creating, reviewing, and sharing a data management plan.

screenshot of DMPTool
https://dmptool.org/

The tool has pre-fabricated templates for each directorate/division across funding organizations. To browse requirements for a specific funder, navigate to the DMP Requirements section and search for or select a funder from the list provided. To create a data management plan using one of these templates, log in to the tool using IU credentials and select the relevant funder from the list provided.

How do I choose a repository for my data?

This question is best answered on a case-by-case basis, but there are general guidelines that researchers can use to make the best choice. If in doubt, get in touch.

  1. If a repository is mandated by a funding organization, researchers must use this repository for sharing data
  2. If there is a widely-used disciplinary repository in your domain, consider choosing that repository. If you aren’t sure, check author guidelines for the top three journals in your field. Do they all recommend the same repository for sharing data? Alternately, take a look at www.re3data.org/ to see a registry of disciplinary repositories.
  3. If you have no appropriate disciplinary repository, would rather not pay fees to deposit data, or prefer to keep your data with your institution, consider Indiana University’s institutional repository IUScholarWorks. It is completely free, operated by the Libraries, and designed to support funder requirements.
  4. If none of the above solutions are appropriate for your data and you need unique or specific features, look for an established, well-supported, open repository like Zenodo (Integrates with Github!) or Harvard’s Dataverse (APIs! Maps geospatial files!)

I want to use IUScholarWorks to preserve and share my data. What do I say in my plan?

https://scholarworks.iu.edu/

Language for data management plans will differ depending on the project and the funder. However, many researchers have found the following statement to be a useful starting point in describing IUScholarWorks:

To increase access to the published research that has been funded, the researchers will deposit peer-reviewed or pre-print manuscripts (with linked supporting data where possible) in the IU ScholarWorks institutional repository. A DOI will be created for the data and used in all publications to facilitate discovery.
These data will be preserved according to the current digital preservation standards in place for content within the IU’s institutional repository infrastructure.  This includes a duplicate copy within the IU Scholarly Data Archive (SDA) and eventual deposit into the Digital Preservation Network preservation platform.
The combination of these systems provides mirroring, redundancy, media migration, access control, file integrity validation, embargoes, and other security-based services that ensure the data are appropriately archived for the life of the project and beyond.

I have a lot of data – can I still put it in IUScholarWorks?

Yes. In almost all cases, we are able to to provide free data archiving to IU-affiliated researchers through our partnership with the UITS Scholarly Data Archive. Large datasets live in the Scholarly Data Archive and are made accessible through IUScholarWorks by way of a persistent URL. Here is an example of a weather dataset published in IUScholarWorks.

Pro tip: You can drop off your dataset in the departmental staging area and send us an email with contextual information – we’ll do the heavy lifting and make sure it gets into IUScholarWorks.

Who can help me with my data management plan?

We can. Contact iuswdata@indiana.edu for assistance creating or implementing a data management plan. The Scholarly Communication Department can help to connect PIs with free campus-supported services to preserve and share data.

Statistical Somethings from IUScholarWorks: A Performer’s Guide to the Saxophone Music of Bernhard Heiden by Thomas Walsh

This post was written by the Scholarly Communication Department summer graduate assistant, Ruthann E. Miller  

This post is the first in a series that aims to highlight and showcase interesting, integral, and open scholarship in the IUScholarWorks repository. IUScholarWorks currently contains more than 8,000 unique items submitted by scholars, students, and professionals from a variety of disciplines. With all of this content, what interests readers the most?

The repository offers a section on statistics that conveniently provide the top 10 most viewed items. These results have a surprising nugget nestled away in the number 5 spot. It is a dissertation entitled, A Performer’s Guide to the Saxophone Music of Bernhard Heiden. The dissertation was written in 1999 by Thomas Walsh and later deposited into the repository in 2006. The dissertation is shared under a Creative Commons license, which is not uncommon for items authored by scholars from the Jacobs School of Music. A Creative Commons license (CC) comes in different varieties, but they all allow the author of a work to decide to allow others to freely distribute, share, and build upon their material while still retaining ownership. This particular dissertation is licensed under a CC BY-NC-ND 2.5, which means the author allows anyone to copy and redistribute the work in any medium or format. However, the author does not allow the dissertation to be used for commercial purposes and it is not permissible to alter the work. The dissertation earned the fifth position with 7,644 views. To put this into perspective, number four on the list has 8,372 and number six has 6,714.

This particular item is important for a number of reasons. First, it is a dissertation. Dissertations are arguably one of the most important steps in a scholar’s early career. They also tend to fill gaps in the literature and explore foundational disciplinary concepts or trends in greater detail. This particular dissertation is incredibly popular, as denoted by its place in the top five. Of the top five items, one is an article on why the drinking age should be lowered, two are technical reports from IU’s scientific community, and one is a journal article on education. There are no other dissertations in the top five items. Not only did a dissertation crack the top five, but it is also the only one in the top ten!

The focus Thomas Walsh applies to the work of Bernard Heiden is fascinating. Walsh spends time providing a biographical sketch of Heiden as well as historical background on Heiden’s pieces that include saxophone. Much of the personal information included in the dissertation was obtained from several interviews Walsh conducted with Heiden. His final interview was in May 1999 and, unfortunately, Heiden passed away in April 2000. Heiden had a close connection with the Jacobs School of Music and was the chair of the composition department until retiring in 1974.

A Performer’s Guide to the Saxophone Music of Bernhard Heiden by Thomas Walsh also showcases the importance of making research open access. As most graduate students in the humanities can confirm, it is notoriously difficult to access dissertations, especially older ones or works connected to universities that have not promoted open access to their graduate students and faculty. Due to this, there is often information that does not find its way into new research simply due to information barriers. IU’s repository, however, provides access to a broad range of items that were formerly out of reach, including dissertations. Now, the research and efforts of newly minted scholars can be attained and used to the fullest potential. By making materials openly available, IUScholarWorks facilitates the use of  the information contained within dissertations to reach new audiences and promote the spread of ideas. This dissertation is just one example of how much impact open access can have on the world of academia.

What item(s) in IUScholarWorks do you view most? How are they unique?

To view the complete list of the highest viewed items in IUScholarWorks, visit our statistics page.