NSF Requirements

The data management plan is an opportunity for PIs to articulate how they will conform to the NSF’s data sharing policy for research results. NSF provides some guidelines on the appropriate content for your plan, and this may vary depending on which program you are applying to (i.e., Directorate, Division, solicitation). If guidance specific to the program is not available, then the following requirements listed in the grant proposal guide Chapter II.C.2.j apply. Most Directorates and a few Divisions have created requirements, which can be found under Dissemination and Sharing of Research Results. These requirements often mirror the general requirements, but may contain details nuanced to research in that domain. It is expected that through time, these requirements will evolve, and will likely become more structured and specific. A JHU Data Management Services Consultant can help you understand these requirements in the context of your research.

Budgeting for Data Management

Under the Grant Proposal Guide II.C.2.g.vi.b, Publication/Documentation/Dissemination, data management expenses including costs of documenting, preparing, publishing, disseminating and sharing research findings and supporting material are an allowable expense in line G2 of the budget. Work with your research administrator to correctly budget for these costs. If you are interested in using the JHU Data Archive, please contact a consultant at datamanagement@jhu.edu.

Accountability for Data Management

In general, a DMP, much like Broader Impact plans, should be considered an agreement between the PI and NSF that is likely to be implemented. In addition to the proposal review, the NSF requires some additional accountability for the content and implementation of the data management plan.  Annual reports must include information on the progress on data management and sharing of research products; the latter can be citations of relevant publications or conferences and of any datasets deposited in a repository. Final project reports are to contain a more thorough updating of the original DMP, including how your data is archived. Some directorates will consider the quality of a PI’s data management and sharing in subsequent proposals. For help considering what preservation and dissemination strategies are appropriate to your project, talk to your JHU Data Management consultant or download our Data Management Plan Questionnaire to guide you through writing your own DMP!

Additional Resource

NSF has compiled a FAQ page for “Data Management & Sharing”.

Data Management Plan Questionnaire