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Scholarly Communications

In 2003, ACRL defined scholarly communication as "the system through which research and other scholarly writings are created, evaluated for quality, disseminated to to the scholarly community, and preserved."

What is a Data Management Plan (DMP)? 

A Data Management Plan (DMP) is a document of varying formats which describes how a researcher or research group will steward data collected before, during and after a research project. A DMP outlines types of data created, how it will be stored, organized and shared.

Why make a data management plan?

  • It's required by many funding agencies
  • It forces you to think about stewardship of an incredibly valuable resource
  • Plans lend themselves to sharing data
  • Prevent catastrophic failure and/or loss of research data

How do I make a data management plan?

The California Digital Library's DMPTool is a free online tool that can be used by anyone to develop generic or funder-specific DMPs. It is the recommended interface for creating DMP's as required by specific funding agencies and incudes step-by-step instructions and guidance. The tool also offers resources such as templates for public funding agencies, a list of participating institutions, and examples of public plans to help fulfill your data management requirements. 

With William & Mary as an administrator of the DMP tool, you will be able to log in with your WM ID, save, share and collaborate on DMP creation, submit DMP for review by librarians, and access information about William & Mary specific support. 

The contents of a good data management plan should include:

  • DESCRIPTION of the types of data to be authored, including nature, scope, and scale;
  • ​PROVISIONS surrounding preservation, access and sharing; 
  • STANDARDS that would be applied, for example format and metadata content;
  • RIGHTS AND LICENSING information;
  • CONCERNS surrounding privacy and security; 
  • ​PLANS for selection and retention of data, and eventual transition or termination of the data collection in the future.

More resources and plan examples can be found via the University of Melbourne, the ICPSR (Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research), or the University of Minnesota.

 DMP's not required by funding agencies can be created in any format.

Additional guides on research data management

Data Management Planning Tool

The DMP tool is the place to start when a funding agency requires a Data Management Plan as part of your grant proposal.

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Rosie Liljenquist
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