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Data Management

Data Management Plans

Guidelines by Funder and Sample Plans


What are Data Management Plans?

Data Management Plans, or DMPs, are documents describing what will happen to data during and after research.  Before writing a DMP, review guidelines for the funding agency you are working with. DMPs often include descriptions of:

  • Roles and Responsibilities
  • Types of Data
  • Data Formats and Metadata
  • Access, Sharing, and Privacy
  • Policies and Provisions for Re-use and Re-Distribution
  • Data Storage and Preservation

Checklist for a Data Management Plan, v4.0 from the Digital Curation Center

In 2013, the US Office of Science and Technology issued a policy memorandum expanding requirements for planning and sharing of data. Most federal funding research agencies require DMPs as part of the grant application process.

Even if you don't need to meet funder requirements, data management plans are still valuable. Planning ahead of time for the storage, backup, archiving, and sharing (if applicable) of data will:

  • Save time and effort down the road
  • Enhance the value and usefulness of data long-term
  • Increase research efficiency


Available at, DMPTool is a free tool to help researchers create data management plans that comply with funder requirements. It walks users through the components required by the funder they're applying to, and allows them to create a completed DMP, which can be exported as a Word document or PDF.