DMP requirements of external funders

Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO)

From 2018 onwards, FWO will make research data management a key element in all their support channels. FWO expects researchers to pay due attention to this dimension before, during and after their research.

What does this actually mean?

Researchers will have to meet a number of new requirements.

  • when applying for funding: answer five questions in the "Data Management Plan" section of the FWO application form. The questionnaire can also be found on the FWO website. To help researchers fill in these questions, guidance is available in this (re)Search tip.
  • after approval of the application: turn the answers to the five questions into a full Data Management Plan (DMP), which must be submitted no later than six months after the start of the FWO project or fellowship.
    • FWO requires researchers to use its standard template for drafting a DMP. Ghent University researchers can find this FWO DMP template in the online data management planning tool For more information on how to use this tool, see the manual.
    • DMPs must not be submitted to FWO but to the host institution of the project or fellowship. If this is Ghent University, DMPs should be sent to the Research Co-ordination Office via no later than six months after the actual start date of the project or fellowship. FWO itself may then request access to DMPs for a random check.
  • at the end of the research:
    • keep research data for at least five years
    • append the final DMP, which of course may have been updated since the initial version, to the final report on the project or fellowship that must be submitted to FWO via the FWO e-portal. The DMP is part of the final evaluation of the project or fellowship by the competent expert panel. 

FWO does not offer separate financing for the storage of research data during the research or for sustainable storage afterwards. Researchers do have the possibility to use the existing operating resources for the purchase of infrastructure for data management and storage. On the application form these expenses can be described in the tab 'consumables'.

For whom?

The new requirements are introduced gradually:

  • from application round 2018: for supervisors of projects for fundamental and strategic basic research
  • from application round 2020: also for PhD and postdoctoral fellowships

The supervisors, and later the fellows, remain accountable at all times for the data management of the projects or fellowships concerned.

See also the dedicated webpage on the FWO website.

Horizon 2020

Researchers who wish to apply for funding from the European Commission as part of Horizon 2020, are invited to include a paragraph on data management in their project proposal.