Open Research Data: reserve enough time for your data management plan


Two months before the October submission deadline, the SNSF would like to remind researchers to prepare their data management plan (DMP) in good time.

As announced in May, the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) supports open research data (ORD) and is introducing the first in a series of measures aimed at promoting this principle: as of October 2017, data management plans (DMPs, edited in mySNF) will be an integral part of all applications for project funding.

The management plans do not need to be completed and finalised by the submission date. They are drafts and do not bear on the evaluation of the project. "All the same, these drafts need to be compiled carefully, sometimes in collaboration with partners or another institution," says Ayşim Yilmaz, open science officer at the SNSF. "We recommend that researchers allow enough time for writing their DMP."

Once the SNSF has approved a project for funding, the DMP can be adapted, modified and extended at any time in the course of the project. The DMP only needs to be finalised once the project has been completed.

Several schemes affected

The SNSF is also introducing DMPs in other schemes and programmes: DMPs will be mandatory in the next call of Ambizione and PRIMA as well as the Sinergia and IICT programmes. For the latter two, mySNF will be enabled as of 1 September 2017.

Within the project funding scheme, the DMP requirement also applies to projects submitted at one of the SNSF's partner institutions. If researchers have submitted a DMP to an organisation acting as lead agency, the SNSF will ask them to upload a PDF version under "Other Annexes". If no DMP was submitted to the partner agency, researchers will have to fill in the DMP section in mySNF.

Non-commercial service providers

More detailed information on writing a DMP is available on the website of the SNSF, where you can also find the relevant guidelines for researchers. Among other things, this document lists all the questions that applicants should ask themselves when they set out to write their data management plan. The website also provides examples of DMPs and links to online repositories.

Any data and metadata published by the applicant have to be made accessible in digital repositories. Provided there are no legal, ethical, copyright or other issues, the data must be formated such that users can find, access and re-use them. The SNSF supports the preparation of data and their online storage with up to 10,000 Swiss francs, on condition that non-commercial service providers are used.


Working group on Open Research Data