Intro to Data Management Planning

5 Things Every Data Management Plan Should Include

Basic questions to ask yourself before you start writing a data management plan
  1. Data Types
    • What types of data will your project produce (samples, specimens, records, etc.)?
    • What file formats will you use?
    • Are those formats sustainable for the long-term?
  2. Metadata
    • How will you label and describe your data?
    • How will you name and organize your files?
    • How will you ensure consistency across your team?
  3. Access and Sharing
    • Who will have access to your data during and after the research process?
    • What forms of your data can you publish?
    • What security, confidentiality and intellectual property requirements apply to your data?
  4. Re-Use
    • If you publish your data, which license will you use?
    • Who can re-use your data and for what purpose?
    • How should your data be cited?
  5. Archiving
    • How will you backup and preserve your data?
    • What if software changes? Will you need to update your files to a new format?

DMP Self-Assessment Tool

More in-depth questions to guide the planning process

This tool includes 30 questions to ask yourself and your research partners when establishing data management procedures for a lab, center or research project. The questions are broken into sections that correspond to the five areas the NSF and most other funders require in data management plans: data types, metadata, sharing, re-use, and archiving.

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

Jake Carlson (2011), "DMP Self-Assessment Tool,"

Download (PDF)

The Purdue University Research Repository (PURR) is a university core research facility provided by the Purdue University Libraries, the Office of the Executive Vice President for Research and Partnerships, and Information Technology at Purdue (ITaP).