Research Data Management
The Tri-Agency Research Data Management Policy states that each postsecondary institution must create an institutional research data management (RDM) strategy to be eligible to administer CIHR, NSERC or SSHRC funds.
The Agencies expect the research they fund to be conducted to the highest professional and disciplinary standards, domestically and internationally. These standards support research excellence by ensuring that research is performed ethically and makes good use of public funds, experiments and studies are replicable, and research results are as accessible as possible. Research data management (RDM) is a necessary part of research excellence.
The three main components of the Tri-Agency Research Data Management Policy are:
- Development of an institutional RDM strategy by March 2023
- A requirement for researchers to complete data management plans (DMPs) for research projects starting in 2022
- That institutions provide the infrastructure for safe data deposit.
In line with the concept of Indigenous self-determination and in an effort to support Indigenous communities to conduct research and partner with the broader research community, the agencies recognize that data related to research by and with the First Nations, Métis, or Inuit whose traditional and ancestral territories are in Canada must be managed in accordance with data management principles developed and approved by these communities, and on the basis of free, prior and informed consent. This includes, but is not limited to, considerations of Indigenous data sovereignty, as well as data collection, ownership, protection, use, and sharing.
A research data management system is the complete system under which research data is collected and managed and includes the formal processes of institutional assessment and periodic re-assessment, creating, reviewing and updating procedures, support services, support personnel, longevity of the approach and compliance.
The purpose of College of the Rockies research data management (RDM) practice is to ensure research data is collected and stored in a consistent manner and that RDM practices at College of the Rockies meet the Tri-Agency’s research data management requirements. This practice is evolving to meet the unique requirements of research at College of the Rockies.
Research data management principles at College of the Rockies include:
- recognition that data is an important research output
- support for researchers to establish and maintain data management practices that are consistent with ethical, legal and commercial obligations as well as Tri-Agency requirements including support in developing and using data management plans
- promoting the importance of data management to researchers, staff and students
- providing access to secure data storage platforms
- recognizing that data created in the context of research by and with First Nations, Métis, and Inuit communities, collectives and organizations will be managed according to principles developed and approved by those communities, collectives and organizations, and in partnership with them
- committing to regular review and adaptation when appropriate to follow established best practices for institutional standards and DMPs.
The research data management strategy and the individual practices and procedures that comprise it apply to all researchers at the College of the Rockies including all employees and students.
The College research data management strategy includes:
- Requirement that all applied research project leaders (e.g., Primary Investigators) create and submit data management plans prior to starting a project.
- Data management planning guidance.
- Data management template. This template is published on the College of the Rockies Applied Research web page. More templates and supporting documents are linked internally to the College of the Rockies Applied Research Community Team, which is available to the COTR community.
- Researcher access to secure physical and electronic data deposit infrastructure
- Active knowledge sharing to ensure researchers understand their obligations
Oversight and Review
The College of the Rockies began RDM strategy development in 2021. As we continue our internal process of developing a 5-year applied research vision, we recognize that our approach to research data management will continue to develop with our AR program. The RDM strategy and practice is constantly evolving toward our ideal end state, and the College of the Rockies will continuously improve and modify its research data management system.
To support the adoption of the RDM strategy and the implementation of RDM practices by researchers, the College will continue to support the following:
I. Enhance Awareness of RDM
- Each new applied research project will require an acknowledgement of the RDM strategy by the PI and co-researchers, and will require a data management plan to be submitted to the Office of Applied Research prior to project start
- Promoting discussion of the RDM strategy and requirements within the Research Community
- Develop a targeted faculty and student engagement strategy
II. Strengthen RDM Governance:
- Evolve current RDM Team to include other stakeholders across the college as necessary
- Update other policies if/as required to reflect RDM
- Establish more streamlined RDM communications and processes with external research partners.
III. Provide and/or Support Access to RDM Tools, Resources, and Infrastructure:
- Identify repository storage option for faculty and staff for data deposit use if required by projects with large data requirements
- Identify repository and access storage for faculty and staff for data in cross-institutional projects