January 11, 2011
NSF Requirement for a Data Management Plan
NSF has instituted a new requirement for data management and sharing of the products of research. All new proposals submitted or due on or after January 18, 2011 must include a supplementary document of no more than two pages labeled “Data Management Plan”. Note that if a Data Management Plan would not be applicable to the proposed scope of work, a clear justification should be included. If it is applicable, the supplement should describe how the proposal will conform to NSF policy on the dissemination and sharing of research results (see AAG Chapter VI.D.4), and may include:
1. the types of data, samples, physical collections, software, curriculum materials, and other materials to be produced in the course of the project;
2. the standards to be used for data and metadata format and content (where existing standards are absent or deemed inadequate, this should be documented along with any proposed solutions or remedies);
3. policies for access and sharing including provisions for appropriate protection of privacy, confidentiality, security, intellectual property, or other rights or requirements;
4. policies and provisions for re-use, re-distribution, and the production of derivatives; and
5. plans for archiving data, samples, and other research products, and for preservation of access to them.
Data management requirements and plans specific to the Directorate, Office, Division, Program, or other NSF unit, relevant to a proposal are available at: http://www.nsf.gov/bfa/dias/policy/dmp.jsp. If guidance specific to the program is not available, then the requirements established in this section apply.
NOTE: The UW eScience Institute has provided some guidance on language for the Data Management Plan requirement that may apply. The guidance can be found at http://escience.washington.edu/blog/writing-nsf-data-management-plan