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Research Data Management

This guide will assist researchers in planning for the various stages of managing their research data and in preparing data management plans required with funding proposals.

Resources for Budeting for Data Management and Sharing

NIHM Data Archive (NDA) cost estimation worksheet is a useful starting point for understanding estimating costs.

The National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine "Forecasting Costs for Preserving, Archiving, and Promoting Access to Biomedical Data" provides an in-depth analysis of  forecasting costs for preserving, archiving, and promoting access to biomedical research data.

The NIH Budgeting for Data Management and Sharing webpage, from which most of this information below was taken, provides general guidance and links to other NIH resources and instructions.

Allowable Costs

Reasonable, allowable costs may be included in NIH budget requests for:

  • Curating data
  • Developing supporting documentation
  • Formatting data according to accepted community standards, or for transmission to and storage at a selected repository for long-term preservation and access
  • De-identifying data
  • Preparing metadata to foster discoverability, interpretation, and reuse
  • Local data management considerations, such as unique and specialized information infrastructure necessary to provide local management and preservation (for example, before deposit into an established repository).
  • Preserving and sharing data through established repositories, such as data deposit fees.
    • If the Data Management & Sharing (DMS) plan proposes deposition to multiple repositories, costs associated with each proposed repository may be included.

Unallawable Costs

Budget requests must NOT include:

  • Infrastructure costs that are included in institutional overhead (for instance, Facilities and Administrative costs
  • Costs associated with the routine conduct of research, including costs associated with collecting or gaining access to research data. 
  • Costs that are double charged or inconsistently charged as both direct and indirect costs 

Requesting and Justiying Costs for Datamanement and Sharing

To request funds toward DMSP costs, investigators should include:

  1. A line item in the budget form
  2. A brief summary of the DMS Plan and a description of the requested DMSP costs in the budget justification

Investigators whose research projects are also subject to the Genomic Data Sharing (GDS) Policy should also include requested costs for genomic data management and sharing.

Request any direct costs to support the activities proposed in the DMS Plan. These costs must be labeled as “Data Management and Sharing Costs” as follows (see Application Instructions for details):

  • R&R Detailed Budget Form: Include the “Data Management and Sharing Costs” line item under F. Other Direct Costs “8-17 Other” on the R&R Budget Form.
  • PHS 398 Modular Budget Form: Use the Additional Narrative Justification attachment of the PHS 398 Modular Budget Form

Include a brief justification of the proposed activities proposed in the DMS Plan that will incur costs. Be sure to include a brief summary of type and amount of scientific data to be preserved and shared, the name of the established repository(ies) to be used, and general cost categories. The recommended length of the justification should be no more than half a page (see Application Instructions for details). This justification must be labeled as "Data Management and Sharing Justification" and should be included as follows: