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Data Management: NIH Policy for Data Management and Sharing

Data Management Plans, Support, and Data Repository Recommendations


NIH released their Final Policy for Data Management and Sharing on October 29, 2020, effective on January 25, 2023. In the official notice, NIH stated:

This Policy establishes the requirements of submission of Data Management and Sharing Plans and compliance with NIH Institute, Center, or Office (ICO)-approved Plans. It also emphasizes the importance of good data management practices and establishes the expectation for maximizing the appropriate sharing of scientific data generated from NIH-funded or conducted research, with justified limitations or exceptions. This Policy applies to research funded or conducted by NIH that results in the generation of scientific data.

The new policy states that all applicants applying for research funding must provide a Data Management and Sharing Plan. While legal, technical and ethical reasons for not sharing data may be provided as justification for not sharing data, the NIH expects researchers to maximize data sharing whenever possible.

The NIH has been developing research repositories for data resulting from their funding. They also support the use of generalist repositories external to the NIH. The full list of NIH repositories may be found on the NIH Data Repositories page. Note that both Open Science Framework and Dataverse are among the list of approved Generalist Repositories. ECU specifically supports access to these repositories for the storage of research datasets that do not contain personally identifiable information.

ECU Libraries are prepared and more than happy to provide support related to the new policy and composing a Data Management and Sharing Plan. 

For Data Management is the primary tool designed to compose an appropriate Data Management Plan in compliance with the new NIH requirement. The updated NIH Data Management Plant templates are already available in

In writing NIH-compliant Data Management and Sharing Plans, please contact the libraries for assistance including help with:

  • Understanding the details of the policy
  • Selecting and evaluating a repository for your data
  • Finding and using appropriate metadata standards
  • The gold standard file formats for different data types
  • Locating NIH supplemental guidance on issues such as suggested language for participant consent for data sharing, allowable costs for data management and sharing, responsible sharing of American Indian/Alaska Native participant data

If you have any questions, or need our help and support with research data management practices, please do not hesitate to contact us:

Academic Library Services: 

Scholarly Communication Department,, 252-328-2261

Laupus Library: