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NIH Data Management

A guide created to help UNC Charlotte faculty and staff manage data, including information for NIH grants.

NIH Data Sharing Policy

National Institutes of Health (NIH) Data Sharing Policy

The National Institutes of Health have had requirements in place for data management and sharing, and public access to publications based on NIH-funded research, for many years, but those requirements have recently been updated. New data management requirements are in place effective January 25, 2023, that replace the older 2003 Data Sharing Policy.

The new NIH data sharing policy requires that sharing occur for all awards generating scientific data regardless of whether data underlie a publication. Data sharing must occur no later than publication or end of award. The data management and sharing plan (DMSP) must also name an established repository. 

Policies pre and post 2023  - this is the new NIH Scientific Data Sharing Website.

This table lists NIH-supported data repositories that make data accessible for reuse. Most accept submissions of appropriate data from NIH-funded investigators (& others), but some restrict data submission to only those researchers involved in a specific research network. Also included are resources that aggregate information about biomedical data & information sharing systems.

Other Important Links

Why Manage and Save Data?

Funding Agency Requirements

Many funding agencies require data management plans for different reasons, including:

  • a commitment to data sharing as an objective of the project
  • the promotion of verification and replication of research analysis and findings

Data management plans should be tailored to the requirements and goals of the funding agency.

Before Settling on a repository to deposit data, consider:

  • The subject(s) the repository will allow in their system.
  • Your funding agencies may have a specific repository for your datasets.
  • The journals in which you will be publishing may have a specific repository for your datasets or require it be in an open access repository, e.g. PLoS.
  • Your scholarly society and colleagues may already be depositing datasets in a repository. Ask them.
  • If you were required to write a data management plan to include with your grant proposal, what did you say you about sharing your research data?
  • Check out the cost for using the repository. Do you have the funding to cover it? The cost to deposit and/or the maintenance fees depends on the repository. Not all repositories will charge to deposit your research data. If it is a repository requiring membership, then either the researcher must belong or the researcher's institution must belong. 
  • Check to see if the repository is able to preserve (not just backing up) your datasets. Does it have the technology and policy in place for preservation to ensure your datasets will be maintained for use in the future?
  • Check out the metadata and vocabulary requirements being used by the repository. This information should include enough information about how the project was conducted so that it can be replicated. Your discipline may have already developed a standard vocabulary.
  • Check out what file formats are acceptable. The repository may have additional restrictions.
  • Check to make sure the datasets receive persistent identifiers, PIDs to identify the dataset. A DOI is the most commonly used PID for datasets and publications. PIDs are used to link the datasets with the publications.
  • Check to see if your datasets can be restricted to specific users, if it is sensitive data.  Can the datasets be restricted for a specific time period?
  • Does the repository provide information on how to cite data reused by others? If you are going to do all the work of depositing your data you may as well receive credit for it. (Daureen Nesdill - U of Utah)