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Data Management Plan

Firstly, Data Management Plan (DMP) is after all a plan, so you must carry it out!

When structuring your DMP, think about the issues below and try to be as specific as possible in your answers. Write what you know at a certain stage in your research: what you do not know (yet), you simply do not know.

As your project continues, think about the issues in more depth. After all, it is research. For instance, at first, you do not know exactly how much data you will produce, or you might change to another tooling later. However, you must get a realistic sense of the necessary activities, effort, and cost involved with your plans! For instance, in the application phase, your estimates may be broad, but when your research becomes more concrete, you can be more specific. Planning is an iterative process, therefore, your DMP is a living document.

Activity planning

  • Plan what needs to be done, as specific as possible.

Resource planning


  • Estimate the size of your dataset.
  • Determine how you retrieve the relevant data. What searching capabilities would you need?
  • What storage facility will you use during and after the project?
  • This does not necessarily only include digital data. Also, take into account where and how you store physical data.

Software and other tools:

  • What tools, equipment, hardware, and software will you need during different stages of your research? This includes capturing, creating, collecting, and processing the data.
  • Determine whether you need specific software, and its licensing conditions and fees.
  • Also think about whether you would need bespoke software development, for instance, to create a website to reach out to the general public.
  • Determine whether you handle personal/sensitive data, whether a tool is fit for this and whether a processing agreement is needed. When you upload to DANS Data Station, you automatically agree to their terms and conditions, and the standard processing agreement they offer. More information on the policies and agreements can be found on the DANS website.
  • The time needed and staff allocated for Data Management.
  • IT services and support needed, including storage.
  • Staff in your project responsible for version management, backups, etc.

Budget planning

  • Based on the above, determine proper costs. Determine if there are costs resulting from specific resources and activities.
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