Data Management Introduction

Importance of Data Management

Data management throughout the data life-cycle will save time, and will help:

  • increase impact of research with data citation
  • clearly document and provide evidence for research in conjunction with published results
  • comply with sharing mandates, and meet copyright and ethical compliance (i.e. HIPAA)
  • preserves data in long-term to safeguards your investment from loss
  • supports open access/sharing with others and further benefits interdisciplinary research

History of Federal Requirements

1999: US Office of Management and Budget ( OMB) Circular A-110 was amended to require Federal awarding agencies to ensure that all data produced under an award will be made available to the public through the procedures established under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

2003: National Institutes of Health began requirement of data sharing. Their Data Sharing Policy page provides the policy, guidance, a data sharing workbook and an FAQ.

2011: National Science Foundation began requirement of the submission of a two page data management plan as a part of all proposals for NSF grant funding. This is considered a first step in what will become a comprehensive approach to data policy. Guidance from the NSF is general, leaving the specifics to be determined by the "community of interest", essentially the discipline to which the proposed project is relevant. NSF initially announced the change in May, 2010. The NSF has updated their Application Guide to include information about the data management plan requirements, in Chapter V, Section 4.12.


Several journals and publishers are recognizing the need to cite data in articles. Here is a list of journals that have open data polices.


GVSU Office of Sponsored Programs would like to thank colleagues at the following universities for sharing their Data Management Plan websites with us and allowing us to provide links to their work.

  • University of Connecticut
  • University of Michigan
  • University of Minnesota
  • University of Virginia
  • University of California at San Diego
  • Rice University
  • Yale University