Research data management principles and responsibilities
This morning the University’s Research and Enterprise Committee approved several recommendations put forward by its Research Data Working Group. Among these was the adoption of a new set of research data management (RDM) principles and responsibilities.
The principles are designed to support the University’s research data policy and roadmap, and follow a similar pattern to those in use at a number of other universities. The group hope that these will clarify the university’s expectations of good practice in research data management as well as enabling those bidding for external funding to demonstrate their compliance with funders’ requirements.
The University supports the principle of data sharing where legally, commercially and ethically appropriate.
The researcher’s responsibilities
Responsibility for research data management rests with the Principal Investigator who will:
- comply with University research data policy;
- consider the interests of the subjects of research data at all times, in line with the University’s information security policies and Ethics of Research Policy and Procedure;
- retain the integrity of the research process through accurate record keeping;
- create data management plans that address elements of data capture, management, integrity, confidentiality, security, selection, retention, sharing and publication. (The DMPOnline data management planning tool is recommended for this purpose);
- create data in an appropriate digital format wherever possible, in order to facilitate data storage and re-use;
- manage data according to the University’s and/or research funder’s data policies, best ethical practice and all relevant legislation;
- specify a retention period for each dataset at the start of a project, (under normal circumstances data will be preserved for at least ten years);
- provide metadata for all archived data at a level appropriate to the permitted access to those data, and include a reason if access is restricted;
- if deemed to be of interest to future research, offer data for deposit to an appropriate national or international data service or repository;
- if data are retained elsewhere (as above), make a record of this with the University by creating a metadata record in NECTAR;
- where research data are not retained, dispose them according to University guidelines;
- avoid giving exclusive rights to host, reuse or publish research data to other bodies without retaining the rights to make the data openly available for re-use, unless this is a condition of funding;
- where possible and timely, include links to shared datasets in published outputs.
The University’s responsibilities
In support of the above, the University will:
- provide means and services enabling registration, deposit, storage, retention of and access to digital research data (via TUNDRA2);
- hold data securely with appropriate access controls (via TUNDRA2);
- provide the facility to link research outputs to shared data (via NECTAR);
- provide advice, training and support for research data management.
Deans and Research Leaders will:
ensure researchers are aware of the University’s research data policy and guidelines.