Cranfield’s Management of Research Data Policy was recently updated to reflect current trends in data policy thinking. Here are some of the significant points to bear in mind when embarking on collecting data for your research:

Your responsibilities as a researcher

  1. The Principal Investigator or Data Steward of a project has ultimate responsibility for research data management and should ensure that a Data Management Plan (DMP) is written, in most cases, before the research starts (some publicly-funded research only requires that one should be written in the early stages of the project).
  2. Published results should always include a statement on how and on what terms supporting data may be accessed (the Data Access Statement). Where the research data are in the form of a dataset or digital object, it’s expected that the statement and metadata will include use of a robust persistent link (e.g. a DOI).
  3. Researchers are responsible for managing the data to ensure that it’s accessible (as appropriate) and fit for purpose, for a duration of ten years after project completion, or longer if specified by the funder. Cranfield’s repository CORD is available to all staff for this purpose.
  4. Where research is conducted in collaboration with external research partners, the researcher should work with the Contracts team in our Research and Innovation Office to ensure that suitable agreements for the ownership and use of research data are established and agreed in writing by the parties concerned before the project starts.
  5. Except where this is a condition of a grant or contract, exclusive rights to research data must not be assigned, licenced or otherwise transferred to external parties.

Data sharing

Your data management plan should typically include a section on how data will be handled and stored during the project. Where data are withheld, there should be a specific statement about why in any published document(s) and records, e.g. for legal, ethical or commercial reasons.

Support and guidance

We have provided answers to the most commonly asked questions in our online guide to reesarch data management.

We also provide CORD, our research data repository, to allow Cranfield researchers to openly publish their data and obtain a Persistent Identifier (DOI).

Finally, but most importantly, you are welcome to contact our Research Data Manager for any advice relating to managing, storing, sharing or preserving your research data. Please contact Greg Simpson via researchdata@cranfield.ac.uk.


Photo by Greg Simpson. CC BY 4.0

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