What does your funder expect?

Data management is a key element of the research process. This is why your funder expects you to think about data management very early in your research planning stage.

Planning is essential

Most major research funders now require some form of documentation at the application stage, to explain how the applicant plans to manage any research data they will create. The extent and detail of these policies can vary.

Some funders prefer this information to be included within the main application while others ask for a separate Data Management Plan (DMP), Technical Plan or similar document.

Data expectations of Research Councils (RCUK)

If you are funded by RCUK, in line with policy on Open Access to publications, you are required to include a statement in your published paper on how and on what terms any underlying data can be accessed by third parties. If there are considered to be good or compelling reasons to protect access to the data, these should be included in the statement.

Please select the Funding Council below to see the relevant data expectations and get further links for help and guidance.

What does Lancaster University expect?

The University expects that "each project will have a data management plan that is produced at funding application stage or at the beginning of the project". (Research Data Management Policy (doc), February 2013). This means that:

  • If you write a Data Management Plan for your Funding Body you do not need to write a separate DMP for the University.
  • If your funding body does not require a Data Management Plan or you are self-funded you are required to produce a Data Management Plan. You can use the DMPonline tool to get a template and guidance. Please consult our Data Management Plan guidance.


Data expectations from other Funding Bodies

  • AHRQ (Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality): Researchers are required to submit a data management plan (DMP)
  • Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation: a Data Management Plan is required for grants asking for $500,000 plus.
  • Cancer Research UK: A data management and sharing plan is required. Data sharing and preservation strategy. Costs associated with RDM can now be budgeted in grant proposals (with justification). CRUK have a Data sharing FAQ.
  • Department for International Development (DFID): An ‘Access and Data Management Plan’ is required for all applications that possess a data component. DFID Research Open and Enhanced Access Policy.
  • Department of Health: A Data Management Plan is currently not required.
  • Department of Defence (DOD): Each funded project must have a Data Management Plan (DMP).
  • Department of Energy (DOE): All research proposals require a Data Management Plan (DMP).
  • Department for Internal Development (DFID): An Access and Data Management Plan must be included in the project design.
  • ERC (European Research Council): The ERC supports the basic principle of Open Access to research data . Currently ERC does not require a data management plan. More information in the ERC open access guidance.
  • EC FP7: In contrast to other leading research funders, FP7 makes no specific statement on data sharing (although Open Access to publications is promoted, see FP7 Open Access leaflet, pdf). However, this will change with the new funding programme Horizon 2020.
  • Horizon 2020: A data management plan is a deliverable within the first six months of projects participating in the Open Research Data Pilot. Other projects are invited to submit a data management plan if relevant for their planned research. Guidelines on Data Management in Horizon 2020 (pdf).
  • Leverhulme Trust: Currently no explicit RDM requirements or statements.
  • NASA: All proposals are required to include a Data Management Plan. "At a minimum, DMPs must describe how data sharing and preservation will enable validation of published results".
  • NHS Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Programme: A Data Management Plan is currently not required.
  • NIH (National Institutes of Health): No general requirements but individual calls may have additional specifications, eg NIH requests that all extramural applicants seeking $500,000 or more in direct costs in any one year provide a data-sharing plan in their applications. NIH Data Sharing Policy.
  • NIHR (National Institute of Health Research): NIHR's policy on Open Access also covers underlying data, samples and models. All NIHR researchers are required to prepare and submit a statement (Data Management Plan) on how underlying research materials, such as data, samples or models, can be accessed. Data sharing: Although the NIHR expects researchers to consider and plan for data access, the policy does not require that data must be made open, nor does it specify how long data must be retained for. You will need to make a statement about your data when you submit your final report to the NIHR Journals Library.
  • Royal Society: At application stage a short (max. 1500 characters) "Outline of Data Management and Data Sharing Plan" is requested. 
  • Wellcome Trust: Data management and sharing plan required for biomedical sciences and medical humanities funding streams. For other subjects refer to the Trust’s guidance.
  • World Cancer Research Fund: A Data Management Plan is currently not required.