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Syracuse University Libraries

Research Data Services: Data Management Planning

Online Research Tools

Researchers may find the following tools useful in their work. Emphasis is given to free (or at least having free components) and online tools or services.

Electronic Lab Notebooks:


  • ELN at Harvard Medical School - The Electronic Lab Notebook Matrix has been created to aid researchers in the process of identifying a usable Electronic Lab Notebook solutions to meet their specific research needs. Through this resource, researchers can compare and contrast the numerous solutions available today, and also explore individual options in-depth.
  • RSpace - An ELN for researchers to organize, manage and collaborate on their projects.
  • Docollab - Project management system, collaboration.
  • Benchling - Life Sciences focused experiment, lab and project management.

Data Analysis/Visualization:

  • TableauPublic - Free version of their desktop and online data visualization platform. All data uploaded to TableauPublic is available to everyone on the Internet. The paid versions allow restricted access.
  • StatCrunch - Simple online data analysis and survey package.
  • Dataviz - Data visualization for time, geographic and comparative data.
  • OpenRefine - Data cleaning and exploration tool.

Directories of Research Tools:

Data Management and Sharing

Many funding agencies, particularly the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health, require grant recipients to make their data public after a certain amount of time.  The exact specifications regarding who, when and how to publish your data vary depending on the funding directorate and the exact nature of your research. Nonetheless, there has been a fundamental shift from keeping the data private to making it public. To ensure the usability of the data and protection of the subjects participating in the study, grant applicants are required to submit a Data Management or Data Sharing Plan. This plan is a brief outline of what data you will collect, how you will collect it, how you will keep it safe during the course of your project, and how and where you will make it public ally available.

Be sure to also look at our page on Data Curation.

Research Data Services can assist you in preparing your DMP. It is best to send an email to Research Data Services to set up an appointment so we can discuss your project.


The video below is a joint presentation by the Qualitative Data Repository and Research Data Services on Data Management Planning and the DMPTool for the BioInspired Institute. Sebastian Karcher begins with a discussion of why researchers should share their data. Then Paul Bern talks about the more detailed aspects of Data Management Plans (at 17:00), with a focus on the new NIH policy (at 29:24), then a demonstration of the DMPTool (at 41:17).



Federal Funding Agency Guidelines

The National Institutes of Health has issued extensive new policy on scientific data sharing to go into effect on January 25. 2023. Please see our guide for more details.

The Office of Science and Technology Policy has issued a memo on "Ensuring Free, Immediate, and Equitable Access to Federally Funded Research." While most of the memo strengthens existing guidelines, there are some new requirements that will have a big effect on publication and data sharing:

  • First and foremost, agencies must “Update their public access policies as soon as possible, and no later than December 31st, 2025, to make publications and their supporting data resulting from federally funded research publicly accessible without an embargo on their free and public release” The memo goes on to state that publications must be available “by default in agency-designated repositories without any embargo or delay after publication.” Also, the data underlying such publications must be made available at the time of publication. Agencies must also develop guidelines for sharing data that are not associated with peer-reviewed publications.
  • Agencies should also provide guidance that repositories align with ““Desirable Characteristics of Data Repositories for Federally Funded Research.” ( .“
  • DMPs must also indicate the specific repository where the researcher expects to deposit their data.
  • Agencies will need to report on the status of their implementation of these guidelines, including the number of publications and other relevant statistics. Additionally, they must collect and make available metadata associated with publications and data, including a digital persistent identifier, at the time of deposit in a public access repository. Publications must be in a machine-readable, accessible format.
  • OSTP will also coordinate with agencies to, among many other things, “improve monitoring and encourage compliance with public access policies and plans.”

For NSF:

Dear Colleague Letter: Effective Practices for Data - Published May 20, 2019, this letter announces that new NSF Data Management Plans must include persistent IDs for data (i.e., a DOI) and must be machine-readable. The letter specifically encourages the use of DMPTool (see below) to generate DMPs.

Requirements by Directorate, Office, Division, Program, or other NSF Unit

General Federal Guidelines:

Federal Agency Access Compliance - A comprehensive guide to federal public access policies

OSTP Responses - A table summarizing the Federal public access policies





Templates and Sample Data Management Plans

Research Data Services can assist you in writing a DMP for any funding agency.  Even if you are not required to complete a DMP, we highly recommend writing one just for your own use.

Syracuse University is now a partner in the DMP Tool from the California Digital Library.  The DMPTool provides a step-by-step interface for creating a DMP for NSF, NIH and many other funding agencies. You can create your DMP, save it, export it and even re-use it in future proposals. You also have the ability to allow your collaborators view or edit your DMP.

Here is a short video introducing DMPTool:

Researchers at SU wishing to use the DMPTool can do so by going signing in using the "Your Insitution" option, selecting Syracuse University from the drop-down list, and signing in with their NetID and password.

DMPTool has a Quick Start Guide to assist you in creating your DMP.

DMPTool also has many publicly viewable DMPs for you to use as a starting point. You can also share your own successful DMPs with the public or just Syracuse University.

If you have any questions or need help using DMPTool or Data Management Planning in general, please contact Research Data Services.

Here are some other examples and help for writing a DMP: