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Create a data management plan

A Data Management Plan (DMP) describes how you work with information during the research process. Umeå University recommends that you set up a data management plan, regardless of whether your funder requires it. There are templates that you can use to facilitate the process.

You are expected to write a data management plan

Writing a data management plan is good research practice and helps you structure your research data management. If your research involves multiple participants, it is also a practical way to communicate workflow, role allocation, data ownership and synchronised data processing.

Many large research funding organisations require researchers to write data management plans for funded projects. Umeå University recommends its researchers write a data management plan for each new research project. If you are a doctoral student, you should set up a data management plan together with your supervisors when writing your research plan.

Content of the data management plan

The data management plan is a tool to create a workflow for data management in your research work. A data management plan usually includes, among other things

  • information about the person responsible for research data management
  • a description of what information your research data contains
  • information on the formats you will use to describe your data
  • procedures for documenting research data
  • methods for assessing the quality and accuracy of the research data
  • appropriate ways to store and protect the research data and the information they contain
  • information about how the FAIR principles will be applied
  • a description of how the research data will be archived
  • information on how research data will be made available.

Use a template for data management plans

Umeå University has developed a template based on the recommendations from Science Europe, which the Swedish Research Council and Formas also adhere to. The template is available in DMPonline and can be used if the funder in question does not have its own template or description of the plan.

Create your data management plan in DMPonline

DMPonline is a tool where you can easily create a data management plan and work with it continuously to create different versions. You can share the plan with others, and choose whether the plan should be public.

If you need a template different from that of the University, DMPonline also gives you access to templates from funders and other organisations.


Log in to DMPonline and create a plan

Log in to DMPonline with your Umu-id and password – the first time you log in, you must create a user account. Once logged in, you will see your dashboard, where you can view your existing data management plans.

  1. Select Create Plans to create a new plan.
  2. Enter the project title and choose whether it should be a mock project.
  3. Leave the default Umeå University as the primary research organisation.
  4. Tick the no funder box to access the templates from Umeå University (or search in the search box for a funder if you want to use another template).
  5. Select the DMP template version that you want to use.

The templates from the Swedish Research Council and the European Commission are included in the templates provided by DMPonline. However, these templates are not available in a question-based form.

Umeå University templates available in DMPonline

Umeå University's data management plan template is available in the following versions:

  • a free-form template (in Swedish and English)
  • a question-based template (in Swedish and English)
  • a question-based template adapted for KBC, Chemical Biological Centre (in English).

The different templates contain data management questions recommended by Science Europe. The templates ask these questions in different ways. The free-form version contains all the questions, while the question-based version adapts the questions to your answers and provides suggestions on how to answer them. For example, if you answer that you do not have sensitive data, no questions related to this will appear. In this way, the question-based template can guide you in writing your data management plan.

The data management plan changes during the research process

A data management plan needs to be updated during the research process, as changes that affect data management may occur. These may include changes in personnel, research methodology, or legislation. It is, therefore, advisable to review the data management plan regularly during your research process. In addition, if you have EU funding, you may need to submit updated versions of your data management plan.

Your data management plan must be preserved

When you have finished your research work, you must preserve the data management plan according to the instructions in Umeå University's retention plan for documents.

Retention and deletion plan – Conducting research (FS 1.1-2067-22)

Questions about data management plans?

The library's research data team will help you if you have questions about data management plans. We can also read your data management plan and provide feedback on its content.

Latest update: 2024-03-19