Medical Research Council - data and IT requirements

"The Medical Research Council is a publicly-funded organisation dedicated to improving human health.

We support research across the entire spectrum of medical sciences, in universities and hospitals, in our own
units, centres and institutes in the UK, and in our units in Africa." (MRC Website)

Uol DMP Document - MRC

MRC data and IT Requirements - Introduction and summary

Information correct as at July 2013.

Please refer to the full MRC data mangement planning guidance document.pdf

Please also refer to the University guide 'Introduction to Managing Research Data – For Researchers and Students'

In common with most other major funders of biomedical research, the Medical Research Council (MRC) expects all research projects it funds to manage effectively and, where possible, share research data. The MRC’s overall concern is to maximise the value of research data for human health in a timely and responsible manner, with as few restrictions as possible, consistently with the law, regulation and recognised good practice.” - MRC Guidance - Data management Plans.

Effective management of medical research data can:

  • enable new research questions to be answered using existing data
  • promote collaboration between different research teams and diverse disciplines
  • allow the sharing of knowledge about the best methods for data collection, linkage and analysis
  • help to ensure that collected data are clean and well documented, with value added
  • support the independent verification of established research findings
  • allow the development and testing of new research methods
  • help to use the data produced by study participants to best effect

Summary of MRC data requirements

All applicants submitting funding proposals to the MRC are required to submit a Data Management Plan (DMP) as an attachment to the main Je-S Proposal form. This also applies to applications for the extension of current funding.

  • All MRC-funded researchers have a responsibility to ensure that opportunities for data re-use are maximised, within the regulatory requirements of the law.
  • Applicants are typically required to submit a Data Management Plan (DMP) at the application stage. A DMP template is provided by the MRC and an adapted version of this template is attached to the University guidance document.
    1. A simple DMP could be fewer than 500 words long.
    2. In cases where rich resources are to be created, a DMP should be between 1,000 and 1,500 words long.
    3. Population- or patient-based studies must meet twenty-one additional requirements.
    4. Established population- or patient-based studies should already have a Policy on Data Sharing which can be referred to in your DMP.
    5. Applicants proposing new population- or patient-based studies should contact their Faculty Research Development Manager before submitting their application.
    6. Once research is funded, DMPs should be updated annually by a designated member of the study team.
  • It is the responsibility of the applicant to identify appropriate discipline-specific data repositories and then to deposit data in one of them to allow sharing. This should be done in a timely manner.
  • A limited and defined period of exclusive data use is reasonable.
  • The MRC is willing to cover some of the costs associated with data sharing.


MRC and general information
MRC Policy on Research Data-sharing
MRC guidance - data management plans
DMP template
MRC Head Office Research Programmes Group
MRC Open Access Policy
Public Health Research Data Forum
Digital Curation Centre MRC Funder’s Data resource
Digital Curation Centre ‘DMP Online’ tool

Digital Curation Centre DMP Checklist

University Research Data Management Support
RCUK Joint Electronic Submission System (Je-S)