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Policies

Data Policies are guidelines for handling scientific data. They are formulated worldwide by research institutions, funding agencies, science policy committees, or publishers and become more and more important.

KIT-Guidelines

The Guidelines for Responsible and Sustainable Research Data Management at KIT (RDM Policy) were adopted by the KIT Senate and Executive Committee on October 17, 2016.

The KIT has also adopted Rules for Safeguarding Good Scientific Practice.

The rules are based on quality assuring standards and have proven a long term reliability in praxis at the institutions of KIT and its predecessors, Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe GmbH and Universität Karlsruhe (TH).

The rules follow primarily the Guidelines for Safeguarding Good Scientific Practice of the German Research Foundation and the Helmholtz Association as well as recommendations of other institutions in the science or university sector.

Helmholtz Association

Empfehlungen für Richtlinien der Helmholtz-Zentren zum Umgang mit Forschungsdaten (German only)
Adopted at the 109th General Meeting of the Helmholtz Association on September, 13-14, 2017, Potsdam

Making information resources more usable
On September 22, 2016, a paper on the handling of research data was approved by the General Assembly of the Helmholtz Association (HGF) and AK Open Science.

Open Access Policy of the Helmholtz Association 2016
The members of the Helmholtz Association adopted a new Open Access guideline onApril 7, 2016.

 

 

German Research Foundation

The German Research Foundation (DFG) bundles the existing guidelines and recommendations for the submission of proposals in its Guidelines for Safeguarding Good Scientific Practice (German only). All universities and non-university research institutions will be obliged to implement the guidelines in a legally binding manner until July 31, 2021 to be eligible to receive DFG funding. The DFG encourages applicants to develop a concept as early as the project planning phase to ensure that the resulting research data is reliably archived and usable by peers. This is described in three fields of action:

  1. "project planning and application“,
  2. "provision“, and
  3. "long-term protection“


Some recommendations:

DFG 2014: Appell zur Nutzung offener Lizenzen in der Wissenschaft (German only)
Unlike text publications, research data is frequently not protected by copyright. In the European legal area database protection rights can take effect instead of or as a supplement to copyrights, making the reuse of data more difficult.
The DFG recommends the use of open licenses to ensure the widest possible dissemination of scientific content in an appeal published on November 20,  2014.

DFG-form 50.06 –07/18: Guidelines Collaborative Research Centres
"The main purpose of an Information Infrastructure Project is the systematic management of data relevant in the context of the Collaborative Research Centre. Such data include all results and sources of the research process (including software, research objects, samples) that are collected, evaluated and/or developed by the project. The project may also entail the use and testing or development of new forms of scientific communication related to such data. Funding may be available for the development and implementation of a design and for the provision of an efficient information infrastructure to make it feasible. This is intended to facilitate scientific synergies in the Collaborative Research Centre through shared data platforms and/or communication forms as well as through efficient use of data.
Professional management of the data collected, evaluated and/or developed in the Collaborative Research Centre is expected. As a rule, the Collaborative Research Centre should therefore take advantage of the relevant local information facilities (such as the applicant universities' libraries, computer centres and biobanks). The use of existing repositories, tools and technologies should generally be given reference over the development of new instruments."

DFG-Vordruck 54.01-09/18: Proposal Preparation Instructions - Project Proposals
"If research data or information will be systematically produced using DFG project funds, describe if and how these will be made available for future reuse by other researchers. Please regard existing standards and data repositories or archives in your discipline where appropriate."

 

 

German Council for Scientific Information Infrastructures

German Council for Scientific Information Infrastructures (RfII) advocates more up-to-date data protection in science.
The council has adopted recommendations on data protection and research data (German only). The background is the reform of data protection law in the European Union and the associated hope of actually being able to exploit the great potential of data-intensive science. The recommendations of the RfII also apply the EU Act to Adapt Data Protection Law to Regulation and to Emplement Directive.

 

 

Federal Ministry of Education and Research

Announcement of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) of May 29, 2018:  Richtlinie zur Förderung von Forschungsvorhaben zur Entwicklung und Erprobung von Kurationskriterien und Qualitätsstandards von Forschungsdaten im Zuge des digitalen Wandels im deutschen Wissenschaftssystem (in German only).
BAnz AT 13.06.2018 B3

 

 

Leibniz Association

The Leibniz Association, an association of German research institutions from various disciplines, emphasises the importance of responsible and transparent handling of research data as part of a sustainable and quality-conscious research process. The aim of the proposals and measures set out in the Guidelines on the Handling of Research Data within the Leibniz Association is to promote the development of structures and processes in the Leibniz Association.

 

 

German Rectors' Conference

19th General Meeting of the HRK, November 10, 2015 Recommendation "How university management can guide the development of research data management. Orientation paths, options for action and scenarios"
Due to the large number of actors involved in RDM, the HRK sees an urgent need for coordination between universities in order to establish a statewide and internationally compatible RDM infrastructure.

 

 

German Data Forum

The German Data Forum (RatSWD) activities are currently only documented in German
Forschungsdatenmanagement in den Sozial-, Verhaltens- und Wirtschaftswissenschaften

 

 

German Psychological Society

The German Psychological Society (DGPs) has developed recommendations for data management which enable an optimal re-use of data and are committed to the ideal of transparent science - an ideal that promotes cooperation and facilitates the verifiability of research results.

European Union

European Union (EU) 2011:  8th Framework Programme - Horizon 2020

The "Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council" was adopted on November 30, 2011. It states the rules for the participation in the 'Horizon 2020 – the Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (2014-2020)' 
Article 40 Part. 2: "Subject to any restrictions due to the protection of intellectual property, security rules or legitimate commercial interests, each participant shall through appropriate means disseminate the results it owns as soon as possible. The grant agreement may lay down time-limits in this respect."

 

Pilot on Open Research Data in Horizon 2020

"Valuable information produced by researchers in many EU-funded projects will be shared freely as a result of a Pilot on Open Research Data in Horizon 2020. Researchers in projects participating in the pilot are asked to make the underlying data needed to vaidate the results presented in scientific publications and other scientific information available for use by other researchers, innovatiave industries and citizens.
[...]
The Pilot involves key areas of Horizon 2020:

  • Future and Emerging Technologies
  • Research infrastructures – part e-Infrastructures
  • Leadership in enabling and industrial technologies – Information and Communication Technologies
  • Societal Challenge: Secure, Clean and Efficient Energy – part Smart cities and communities
  • Societal Challenge: Climate Action, Environment, Resource Efficiency and Raw materials – except raw materials
  • Societal Challenge: Europe in a changing world – inclusive, innovative and reflective Societies
  • Science with and for Society

[...]
Projects may opt out of the pilot to allow for the protection of intellectual property or personal data; in view of security concerns; or should the main objective of their research be compromised by making data openly accessible.

The Pilot will give the Commission a better understanding of what supporting infrastructure is needed and of the impact of limiting factors such as security privacy of data protection or other reasons for pojects opting out of sharing. It will also contribute insights in how best to create incentives for researchers to manage and share their research data."

From: Guidelines on FAIR Data Management in Horizon 2020

 

Digital Curation Centre   

The DCC provides an overview of funder's data policies.

 

National Science Foundation

The NSF provides information on Data Sharing Policy and Data Management Plan Requirements

Nature

Guidance for authors:
"All manuscripts reporting original research must include a data availability statement. [...]"

Editorial and publishing policies:
"Sharing data sets: A condition of publication in Scientific Reports is that authors are required to make materials, data and associated protocols promptly available to others without preconditions. Data sets must be made freely available to readers from the date of publication, and must be provided to Editorial Board Members and peer-reviewers at submission, for the purposes of evaluating the manuscript.[...]"

 

Further Examples

You can find an overview of other journal policies at forschungsdaten.org (German only).