On the topic of data management and the creation of DM plans for the current ICT of the Future call, a number of general topics can be identified from the enquiries and discussions with applicants, on which DIO Data Steward/Coach Axel Quitt publishes the following recommendations:
Structure of the data management plan
As discussed in the workshops, there is no specific template for the DMP. It is already apparent that different templates are used. When using each template, I recommend three things:
- THINK OF THE READER
- THINK OF THE READER
- THINKING OF THE READER
A clear chapter structure, with recognisable headings, chapter numbers and paragraphs, and possibly also intentionally set blank pages, makes the document much easier to read and understand for the addressee. Please also consider a table of contents so that you can jump to individual chapters via a link or menu.
Readability of the document
Always explain abbreviations in a short paragraph, preferably when the abbreviation is used for the first time.
Many details are, of course, not yet known at the time of application. Where possible, however, at least estimates or indications of magnitudes should be given in the DMP.
This also applies to decisions that are (or can be) made only in the course of the project. Normally, the framework parameters or criteria under which these decisions are made are already known. Then they should be mentioned in the DMP.
For the sake of readability, avoid too many cross-references; instead, use the possibility of summarising in one sentence facts already stated in other documents. You will see that the original document also benefits from this.
There are often links in the DMP templates, e.g. to metadata standard libraries etc.. Use these in advance to see if certain standards or procedures lend themselves to data quality assurance. The same applies to open repositories.
Data and metadata
Beware – sometimes templates blur the lines between data and metadata. Make sure you know which world you are describing data in.
Combination with project plan
The DMP is a living document. Use the combination with the project plan to define when to revise the DMP and when to add new versions of the DMP as deliverables to the project schedule.
If you are unsure about something reagrding to DMPs, just ask your data steward at the DIO (firstname.lastname@example.org). Your information will be kept confidential. General relevant topics and feedback will be published on this website under ICT of the Future.