What is Research Data Management?

New to research data management? Don't worry — many of the activities involved will most likely be familiar: saving work in formats that we can re-open later, naming files so we can find them quickly, keeping track of different versions of documents, backing up valuable data and controlling who has access to it. The University can support you in this process and help to make it a less daunting, more rewarding task.

Good research practice

Management of data is an essential part of good research practice. Most research funders and many academic publishers now have mandates requiring research data to be properly managed and, where possible, shared. Just as importantly though, properly managed research data is easier for you to work with.

Research Data Management means the storage, curation, preservation and provision of continuing access to digital research data. These pages will help you plan, organise, access, and preserve & share your electronic research data, in whatever form they take.


Do you know what your funder expects from you? In our planning guidance you will learn more about the Data Lifecycle, data management plans, and you can check funder expectations. There is also a dedicated webpage on EPSRC data expectations.


With a little planning, you can make your data files easy to store, find and reuse. Lean more in our guides on data storage, file formats, naming files and folders, documentation and metadata, and backup and security.


Do you need to share your working data with colleagues at Lancaster University or elsewhere? Are you looking for data that is held elsewhere in data centres? Consult our guide on accessing and sharing your data.

Preserve and share

You have invested a lot of time and effort in creating your data, so keep it safe in the long run. Look at our guidance on how to select data for preservation, how to find the right data archive, how to license your data and how to write a data access statement that you can put into your research paper.

Lancaster University Research Data Policy

The Lancaster University Research Data Management Policy was approved by Senate in February 2013 (last revised in 2015). The Policy applies to all research conducted by University staff and postgraduate research students(PGRs) regardless of whether or not the research is externally funded.
The policy does not currently apply to taught postgraduate students or undergraduates (apart from in exceptional circumstances).

Data and Pure

Pure can make your data more visible. You can create a metadata record linking to your data that you have deposited in an external repository or you can deposit your data files into Pure. Learn how you can deposit data via Pure on our deposit data webpage.

Get RDM support

Book RDM training and get in touch to get support with Data Management Plans, storing and publishing data.

Datasets in the Research Directory

You can also see an overview of recent Lancaster University datasets for examples of how other researchers research is stored.