Boston College Libraries Faculty Newsletter



Help for Data Management Plans

This summer, the National Endowment for the Humanities became the latest federal grant funding agency to require data management plans to be submitted with grant proposals. Agencies such as the National Science Foundation began requiring them earlier this year in an effort to promote effective curation and preservation of digital research data. Will you be writing a grant proposal soon? The idea of having to include a data management plan might give you pause if you’ve never created one before. Fortunately, librarians at the Boston College Libraries are working hard behind the scenes to develop new support services for faculty who need data management plans for their research. As an intern at the O’Neill Library, I had to the opportunity to work with the Science Bibliographers to develop these services.

Instincts may tell you to search Google for “data management plans.” Such a search will return lots of results, but why not let the library sort through all of that information for you? Your first stop when preparing to write a data management plan should be the Data Management LibGuide. This research guide has all the information you will need to develop a comprehensive plan for managing your data, and examples and tools to assist you with writing the actual document. It is tailored specifically to Boston College faculty and features links to all of the on-campus support services that Boston College provides to meet your data management needs.

In the spring 2012 semester, the O’Neill Library will begin offering Data Management Workshops, open to all faculty and students. This one hour course will introduce data management and explain how it can benefit you and your research. Topics covered will include data storage, documentation, loss prevention, security, sharing, and citations. Participants will have the opportunity to talk about their own research and ask a librarian any questions they may have. Stay tuned to the Libraries’ news page for course dates and times.

For a more detailed look at how data management fits into—and can impact—your research, visit the archived version of our exhibit The Digital Research Data LifeCycle. The exhibit is also available on the above mentioned Data Management LibGuide.

Amanda Tarbet
Science Librarian Intern