National Guidelines

Research Data Policies of the Helmholtz Centers (German only)
All Helmholtz Centers operate section-specific research data policies.By resolution of the Helmholtz General Assembly, for each Helmholtz Center respectively, these policies are supplemented by an overarching, center-wide policy.

Gute (digitale) wissenschaftliche Praxis und Open Science (German only)
Support and Best Practice for the implementation of the DFG "Guidelines for Safeguarding Good Scientific Practice"

Recommendations for Policies of the Helmholtz Centers on Research Data Management
Adopted at the 109th General Meeting of the Helmholtz Association (HGF) 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.


The DFG has adopted ten principles (German only) to supports researchers in all stages of their research career. These principles are defined as a supplement to the "Guidelines for Safeguarding Good Scientific Practice".


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:

Specification of Requirements Relating to the Handling of Research Data in Funding Proposals
Information for Researchers No. 25, 14 March 2022

DFG 2020: Process Guideline for GoodScientific Practice (German only)
To whom do I turn with questions regarding good research practice, or in the case of suspected scientific misconduct? What does a typical investigation look like in such cases of suspicion? And what consequences can it have?These and other questions are answered in the process guideline, which draws on the wide experience of the DFG and its Head Office in dealing with instances of suspected scientific misconduct in the past.

DFG-form 50.06 –06/20: 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 54.01-04/20: 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."

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 2020: The Digital Turn in the Sciences and Humanities
As digital technology continues to play an ever-greater role in our daily lives, we are also seeing a growing impact on scientific inquiry and the research cycle, including how the scientific disciplines perceive themselves.


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.
In light of diverse discussions about the use, exploitation, and commercialization of digital data, RfII has examined different data services at the interfaces of science, business, civil society, and government. Based on an analysis and comparative evaluation of more than forty data services from different domains, it derives recommendations (German only) on how competition and plurality among data services can be ensured for the greatest possible benefit of science.
Further recommendations and reports of the RfII: online


As the most important science policy advisory body, the German Science Council advises the federal and state governments on the further development of the higher education system in terms of content and structure and on the funding of research institutions. One of its central tasks is to contribute to the further development of the science system. The Science Council fulfills this task mainly by preparing and publishing recommendations.

Statement of the German Science Council of October 2020 (German only)



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.


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.


In the context of the increasing scientific importance of Big Data sources, the German Data Forum (RatSWD) discusses the legal and structural challenges of their use.


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.