Research Data Management guidance for BU researchers


RCUK principles

Making research data available to users is a core part of the Research Councils’ remit and is undertaken in a variety of ways. Research Councils are committed to transparency and to a coherent approach across the research base. These RCUK common principles on data policy provide an overarching framework for individual Research Council policies on data policy.


BU position on research data

BU recognises the importance of research data, its value to society and BU’s research excellence and all BU research data must be managed to the highest practicable standards throughout the research data cycle.

Responsibility for managing research data lies primarily with the Principal Investigator(s) through producing and implementing a data management plan.

Externally funded researchers must meet the funder’s requirements for data management.


The BU Research Data Policy and Procedures outline roles, responsibilities and support for managing research data.

This page provides additional guidance for researchers to meet the policy and further support is available via


Funder requirements

Funders have varied requirements relating to curation and access of  research data, which can mainly be found in the contract relating to your research projects.

An overview of some of the major research funders’ policies can be read here.

If you need help with understanding your funder’s requirements, or if you can’t find information specific to the funder of your project,  please contact your Project Delivery Officer.


Producing a Data Management Plan (DMP)

Data Management Plans (DMPs) should state what data will be created by your research project and identify how the data will be collected, preserved and shared.

Support available and information on Research Data Management plans can be found on BU’s research blog


Increasingly funders require a data management plan at application stage, such as ESRC, MRC NERC, DfiD and for other funders it is good practice for applicants to describe their approach to data sharing in the project, plan and monthly reports.

Useful links

The Digital Curation Centre (DCC) provides expert advice and practical guidance. The following guides relate to data management planning:


Working on a project

It is critical to work with your research data in a secure and ethical way.

The University of Bristol have produced useful guidance on Managing sensitive research data

Please contact your IT Business Relationship Manager for advice on available IT services for managing active research data effectively.


Finishing a project and sharing your data

Research funders increasingly require researchers to make their research data available after it has been collected. The DCC have produced a useful Introduction to Curation – this series of briefing papers covers all stages of selecting and archiving your research data.

Wherever possible, researchers should select appropriate subject or funder repositories to archive their data.

Your choice of data repositories will vary depending on your funder, for instance AHRC has a preference for using the ADS repository for Archaeological studies.

More information on subject repositories can be found at:

BU is currently developing support for storage and preservation of data that has long-term academic value. For more information or support with selecting an appropriate repository for your data, please contact:


Preparing and Selecting Data

The DCC provide useful guidance on how to select and prepare your data for curation:

Useful links:


Publishing and sharing your data

Research funders and publishers increasingly require researchers to cite access to shared research data in published outputs. The DCC provide guidance on licencing data to protect your intellectual property and citing your data in publications.

Useful links:


Support, advice and guidance

We are currently developing advocacy and support for researchers.

For further information or queries, please contact