Director of Research

Data Management Plan Checklist


The Directorate you are submitting to may have established protocols for an appropriate data management plan.  Address solicitation requirements and any special requirements from the program.

Your data management plan should identify the data products that will be created, the standards used and organization of the data-related materials.  You should state the access, sharing and re-use policies and address backups, archives and preservation.  We have created a checklist to help you describe the data plan, but no one list fits all research projects.

Data Management Tools and Cookbooks

- DataONE Data Management Plan (DMP) Tool:
- IMBER Data Management Cookbook:
- NOAA Data Management Plan template:

Some points to consider as you write your data management plan

Title - Data Management Plan for [grant title]
Author(s)– PI, data manager, etc.

Identify the data-related materials that will be created – for example experimental data, model output, remote sensing, software, etc.

What are the natural ways the material to be created would be organized?

What are the standards in your community?
If there are community standards and you are not using them, why?

How will the data be gathered?

Quality Assurance/Quality Control procedures?
Directory structure
Identifiers and naming standards
Metadata standards

Are there policies that define what data will be shared?
What will be shared
When will data be made available
Where, is it publicly accessible
Will it have a license (for example Creative Commons)

Any restriction on sharing or re-use, reasons?

How are you ensuring that your materials are not lost?
How/when are you creating copies (Lots of Copies Keeps Stuff Safe)
Where are the copies
How long do you need to keep

What data will be maintained beyond the life of the project?
Which materials need to be preserved for the long term
Where is that going to happen
When is that transfer of data going to happen

Online training for data management

The Federation for Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) offers a Data Management Short Course for scientists:

The New England Collaborative Data Management Curriculum (NECDMC) is an instructional tool for teaching data management best practices to undergraduates, graduate students, and researchers in the health sciences, sciences, and engineering disciplines:

There are also training modules available on the DataOne website:

Last updated: July 18, 2014