November 13, 2019

NIH Releases Draft Data Management and Sharing Policy for Comment

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is seeking comments for its recently released draft policy on data management and sharing.

The policy, which follows a 2018 request for information, would apply to research that is funded or conducted completely or partially by the NIH and generates scientific data. The shared data would be made accessible for use by the research community and broader public.

The policy proposes that grant applicants would submit a plan detailing how scientific data should be managed and shared. Applicants would also be required to comply with the plan approved by the NIH’S institutes, centers and offices. It describes effective management and timely sharing of scientific data and any additional data resulting from NIH-funded or conducted research.

Additionally, the NIH proposed a supplemental draft guidance to assist grant applicants who may be subject to the NIH data management and sharing policy by proposing that costs may be included in NIH budget requests. Costs would be included with plans associated with curating data and developing supporting documentation, preserving and sharing data through established repositories and local data management considerations.

The following are also suggested for the plan:

  • A description of the types and estimated amount of scientific data resulting from NIH-funded or conducted research including which scientific data would be preserved and shared
  • An indication of whether specialized tools are needed to access or manipulate shared data
  • An indication of what standards would be applied to the scientific data
  • An indication of timelines for data preservation and access
  • Data sharing agreements, licenses, other use limitations, and
  • Identification of the individual(s) who would be responsible for the components of the plan and their roles in data management.

Comments on the draft policy are due January 10, 2020, and may be submitted via an online portal.