Data Management Plans

Quality assured and correct data management is often facilitated by a well-thought-out data management plan (DMP). Many funders in Europe and the US require that you submit a data management plan. This currently applies to the Swedish Research Council, Horizon 2020, European Research Council (ERC) and some US-funded projects.

A data management plan is a document that collects information about data management in a research project.

The plan covers all phases of the project, from planning and collection, creation, or generation of data, to analysis, publishing and archiving.

A data management plan is a "living" document that should be kept updated throughout the project.

Key components of a DMP are:

  1. Description of data
  2. Documentation and data quality
  3. Storage and backup
  4. Legal and ethical aspects
  5. Accessibility and long-term storage
  6. Responsibility and resources
Logo for DMP Online.


You can use DMPonline is a tool for researchers to set up a data management plan (DMP). Select “Sign in with your institutional credentials” and log on with your KI ID. 

Further reading

Swedish National Data Service (SND): Checklist for a Data Management Plan. The checklist is a translation of the SND's checklist in Swedish, which contains more extensive information for each element.

The Association of Swedish Higher Education Institutions (SUHF): Recommendations for a data management plan / Rekommendation för datahanteringsplan (Swedish only)

Data Management Expert Guide

Introduction to data management plans: Video from the Swedish Data Service (in Swedish)

The Swedish Research Council

As from 2019, all awarded grants from the Swedish Research Council (VR) must have a data management plan (DMP). This requirement aims to improve data management in research in general and increase access of research data according to the FAIR Principles.

KI is responsible for making sure that data management plans for VR research projects at KI are in place.

If you have been awarded a VR grant:

  • Create the data management plan for your VR project by using the custom KI VR web-based template available in DMPonline (see the manual below for instructions).
  • The template facilitates the creation of data plans and includes guidance and text suggestions.
  • When finished, select the Request feedback tab and click on the Request feedback button. A member of the Research Data Office (RDO) team willl provide feedback and you will get a notification when we have looked at your plan.
  • Alternatively you can export your plan as a PDF or Word and submit it to or email us and let us know that your plan is ready and we can collect it from DMPonline.
  • RDO will go through your plan and provide feedback/help you if you have any questions.

When RDOs comments/suggestions have been addressed:

  • RDO will notify your head of department that the plan is in place.
  • The data management plan should be registered together with all other VR project documents under the same registration number.

The data management plan shall be followed up annually and amendments shall be communicated to

The following description is direct instructions from the Swedish Research Council on what a Data Management Plan (DMP) should contain:

  1. Description of data – reuse of existing data and/or production of new data:
    • How will data be collected, created or reused? 
    • What types of data will be created and/or collected, in terms of data format and amount/volume of data?
  2. Documentation and data quality: 
    • How will the material be documented and described, with associated metadata relating to structure, standards and format for descriptions of the content, collection method, etc.?
    • How will data quality be safeguarded and documented (for example repeated measurements, validation of data input, etc.)?
  3. Storage and backup: 
    • How is storage and backup of data and metadata safeguarded during the research process? 
    • How is data security and controlled access to data safeguarded, in relation to the handling of sensitive data and personal data, for example?
  4. Legal and ethical aspects: 
    • How is data handling according to legal requirements safeguarded, e.g. in terms of handling of personal data, confidentiality and intellectual property rights? 
    • How is correct data handling according to ethical aspects safeguarded?
  5. Accessibility and long-term storage: 
    • How, when and where will research data or information about data (metadata) be made accessible? Are there any conditions, embargoes and limitations on the access to and reuse of data to be considered?
    • In what way is long-term storage safeguarded, and by whom? How will the selection of data for long-term storage be made?
    • Will specific systems, software, source code or other types of services be necessary in order to understand, partake of or use/analyse data in the long term?
    • How will the use of unique and persistent identifiers, such as a Digital Object Identifier (DOI), be safeguarded?
  6. Responsibility and resources: 
    • Who is responsible for data management and (possibly) supports the work with this while the research project is in progress? Who is responsible for data management, ongoing management and long-term storage after the research project has ended? What resources (costs, labour input or other) will be required for data management (including storage, back-up, provision of access and processing for long-term storage)? What resources will be needed to ensure that data fulfil the FAIR principles?

Horizon 2020

From 2017 all H2020 projects are covered by the “Open Research Data Pilot” (ORD). This means that all H2020 projects granted from 2018 and onwards shall submit a Data Management Plan (DMP) 6 months after the project has started, at the latest.

See below about opting out from the Open Research Data Pilot.

A Data Management Plan for a H2020 project shall describe how you manage your research data during its whole life cycle. As a part in making your data FAIR your DMP should describe

  • The handling of research data during & after the end of the project
  • What data will be collected, processed and/or generated
  • Which methodology & standards will be applied
  • Whether data will be shared/made open access
  • How data will be curated & preserved (including after the end of the project).

Sensitive data – ”Opt out”

Research projects within H2020 could withdraw from making its data openly available (Open Access). It is called “opt out” and concerns data that for various reasons are sensitive or eg. confidential.


Costs associated with open access to research data, including the creation of the data management plan, can be claimed as eligible costs of any Horizon 2020 grant.

Further reading

Open Research Data as the default - Frequently Asked Questions about the extension of the Open Research Data Pilot

Data management – H2020 online Manual - costs

Guidelines on FAIR data management in Horizon 2020

European Research Council (ERC)

The participation of beneficiaries of ERC grants to the  Horizon 2020 Pilot on Open Research Data (which demands a DMP) has been voluntary until now.

From 2021, the option to opt out from the ORD will not be possible and all successful applicants will need to submit a DMP within six months after the start of the grant.

The DMP should address how the data generated within the project meet the FAIR principles and provide information on:

  • Name and persistent identifier for the datasets
  • Standards and metadata used
  • Curation and preservation methodology
  • Data sharing methodology
  • Allocation of resources and data security

A template for an ERC DMP exists in Word  and also in DMPonline.

If you have been awarded an ERC grant:

  • Get help and inspiration by looking at our guiding questions and example answers for the different sections of the ERC DMP template.
  • Create the DMP for your ERC project by using the ERC Word Template or the ERC template available in DMPonline.
  • When finished, submit the DMP to the Research Data Office (RDO) at KI: for feedback/help.
  • If you create the DMP in DMPonline, you can also email and let us know that your plan is ready in DMPonline and we can collect it from there.
  • RDO will go through your plan and provide feedback/help you if you have any questions.
  • When a final version of the DMP is ready, the DMP should be submitted to ERC and also be registered at the institution together with all other ERC project documents under the same registration number.

Contact Research Data Office

If you have questions regarding data management plans, please contact