Data Planning & Management - What you need to do

"Water, water, everywhere, Nor any drop to drink". Flooded with information but want some straightforward advice about data management?

This page, and those linked to it focus on some of the specific things about data, IT, and data management and planning you need to do to make your life easier and any funder happy - whether bidding, during your research or after it has completed.

A. Start early with a data management plan

This is a good starting point, whatever your area of research and whether you will be University or externally funded. It frames the issues you will need to deal with as part of research definition or the bid process and thereafter if it is successful and you proceed.  You will ask yourself how you plan to organise the work.  It will clarify what you do and don't know.  It is not an end-point though - the plan will develop as you become clearer, answers are documented and you progress with your research.

Action 1: Look through a data management planning checklist  (this provided by the Digital Curation Centre).

Action 2: Create a data management plan.  You can use DMP Online use it as a template or if required, use a funder's format .  

B. Know what resources the University has

The University manages a range of IT for researchers and offers support in putting together bids and throughout research.

Action 3: Look at this website, University research IT and research data management support and decide what is relevant to you.

Action 4: Contact IT Services ( or to discuss and/or access services.

C. Know what the University and your funder requires

The what, whenhow, how often and in what format - as part of a bid, once successful, during research, at completion and beyond.

Action 5: Read the University RDM Principles, and quote them in your proposal.  

Action 6: If you are new to research data management and/or don't have an external funder read and apply 'Introduction to Managing Research Data'.

Action 7: If you already have or are bidding for resources from a research funder look at 'Introduction to Managing Research Data' and the specific funder based pages (RCUK and Non-RCUK).

Specific data and IT requirements, example documents and text

NERC NIHR STFC Wellcome Trust

Action 8: Don't re-invent the wheel. Use any local good practice examples and document templates attached to these pages. See how your research group, Department or College can advise.

D. Use resources that are generally available

There is a lot out there - support, advice, guidance, training, and resources such as discipline specific repositories.

Action 9: As a starting point look at our signpost to external resources.