National Science Foundation

Data Management Plan


Important Announcement:

Beginning January 18, 2011, ALL proposals submitted to the National Science Foundation (NSF) must include a supplementary document of no more than two pages labeled "Data Management Plan" (DMP).  This supplement should describe how the proposal will conform to NSF policy on the dissemination and sharing of research results and may include:

  • the types of data, samples, physical collections, software, curriculum materials, and other materials to be produced in the course of the project

  • the standards to be used for data and metadata format and content (where existing standards are absent or deemed inadequate, this should be documented along with any proposed solutions or remedies)

  • policies for access and sharing including provisions for appropriate protection of privacy, confidentiality, security, intellectual property, or other rights or requirements

  • policies and provisions for re-use, re-distribution, and the production of derivatives

  • plans for archiving data, samples, and other research products, and for preservation of access to them.

For more information about this new requirement, please visit the NSF web page Dissemination and Sharing of Research Results.  Among other helpful resources, this page includes links to the NSF Data Sharing PolicyGrant Proposal Guide, and DMP Frequently Asked Questions.

Additionally, five NSF directorates - Engineering; Geosciences; Education and Human Resources; Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences; and Mathematical and Physical Sciences - have provided specific guidance on the NSF requirement: If you plan to submit a proposal to any of these directorates, you will find this information extremely helpful.  If you plan to apply to a different directorate, but are having trouble understanding the DMP requirement, you may still wish to review these easy-to-understand resources.

For more information, please contact the OPSP staff.