The NWO data management section

Researchers are expected to answer four questions about data management in the research proposal. After a proposal has been awarded funding, the researcher should elaborate the section into a data management plan. Within four months of the research project being awarded funding, the researcher must have submitted the first version of the data management plan to NWO.

Here you can read some advice and suggested answers regarding the four questions of the NWO data management section. Of course you can add more details to these answers to clarify the specific character of data management in your research. For more help and information, please contact the information specialist in your faculty.

1. Will data be collected or generated that are suitable for reuse?

The preferred answer to this question is ‘yes’. Of course for NWO reuse of data means saving money but you as researcher benefit from the acknowledgements, references and citations when your data are reused. You can make distinction in raw, processed, and published data (data linked to publications).

In some cases you have to answer 'no', e.g. when personal data cannot be anonymized without making them less usable or when research partners do not allow reuse of the data.

Suggested answer:
Yes. All processed data are suitable for reuse.

In some cases:
No. The data collected in this research cannot be reused because one of the project partners does not allow this / after anonymization the data will be useless for new research / anonymization the data is not possible / other reason.

2. Where will the data be stored during the research?

Important is that you indicate how the risk of data loss or damage and unauthorized access to your data will be minimized. Therefore use the UT network storage (M- or P-drive). However, if you work with large datasets or highly confidential data, contact the LISA-ICT account manager or LISA-Information specialist in your faculty for advice.

Suggested answer:
All data will be stored on the UT network storage which provides for regular backups and complies with UT data policy.

3. After the project has been completed, how will the data be stored for the long-term and made available for the use by third parties? To whom will the data be accessible?

After completion of your research project NWO wants you to deposit the data from your project in a repository (data archive). For long-term data archival NWO prefers national or international trusted repositories. In the Netherlands we have two trusted repositories with a so-called Data Seal of Approval: 4TU.ResearchData for the beta and technical sciences and DANS Easy for data from alfa and gamma research. You could also choose an international repository that caters to your field of research, see Re3data, but be aware of the need of a proper quality standard, like Data Seal of Approval.

NWO policy is that data should be open if possible and closed if needed. If the data cannot be open, at least you should make the data traceable and available in a persistent and permanent way.

Suggested answer:
Data will be archived in DANS/4TU.ResearchData/other trusted repository and be made publicly available.

  • Confidential/personal data will be archived under restricted access.

4. Which facilities (ICT, (secure) archive, refrigerators or legal expertise) do you expect will be needed for the storage of data during the research and after the research? Are these available?

The answer to this question of course highly depends on what kind of research you are planning and what kind of data you are going to generate or collect. When you need specialized facilities, e.g. for confidentiality or large amounts of data (> 1 TB), please contact your LISA-ICT account manager or LISA-Information specialist.

Suggested answer:
For confidential/personal data the certified section of the UT network storage will be used.