Research data services

The University Libraries offer data management education, consultation, and services for individuals, lab groups, departments, and courses.

NIH data management and sharing policy

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) Data Management and Sharing (DMS) policy took effect Jan. 25, 2023. All research proposals generating scientific data are required to have a data management and sharing plan.

Comprehensive guide with UMN-specific information

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We can provide tailored data management curriculum and training for course-integration or lab/research groups on topics such as:

  • Data management basics (file/folder naming and organization, storage/back-up, documentation, archiving)
  • Qualitative data management
  • Data sharing (funder/journal mandates, repositories, planning ahead, ethics)
  • Managing sensitive and protected data (human participant, spatial data, protected species)
Request training

Virtual introduction to data management​

Managing your Research Data: A Tutorial Series (October 2020) 

Specialized data management topics:

Immersive education options

Twice annually, we offer an in-depth data management boot camp for graduate students. Learn more about our data management boot camps.

Each spring, we offer a half-day “data management in transition” workshop aimed at students about to matriculate. This workshop can be found with LATIS workshops when registration is open.

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Personalized consultations can be requested by individuals or lab/research groups on topics such as:

  • Data management plans (DMPs), 
  • Data sharing (consent form language, repository selection, documentation guidance, IRB protocols), and
  • Data management for specific projects (e.g., file naming and folder organization for a research group).

Request a consultation

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Data Repository for the University of Minnesota (DRUM)

DRUM is an institutional repository for University of Minnesota researchers, students, and staff to share data, with 10+ discipline-specific curators who ensure your work is findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable.

Learn more about DRUM.

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Data management plans (DMPs)

Data management plans (DMPs) are a blueprint for how to manage data throughout their life-cycle. In addition, many funders require a DMP as part of the grant application.

We can help you create a DMP and provide feedback on your draft in a timely way to meet grant deadlines.

Get started with a template

If you don't already have a draft data management plan, then start one now.

  1. Make a copy of our U of M DMP Template (Google Doc) or log in with your U of M ID to the DMPTool to draft a new plan to manage your data.
  2. Review your funder requirements for data management plans.
  3. Explore example data management plans from University of Minnesota researchers
  4. Refer to our Data Management Plan checklist

Get feedback

Send us a copy of your DMP. We will review your plan within two business days and suggest things to consider or recommend using available tools and resources found across campus. Email your draft plan in MS Word doc, or send a Google doc link, to

Helpful tip: Include a link to your funder/proposal that you are applying to so that we ensure any specific data sharing requirements are met.

Boilerplate language for using DRUM in your grant

The Data Repository for the University of Minnesota (DRUM) is the university’s open access data repository for data sharing that enables long-term access and preservation. If appropriate for your data, use this boilerplate language in your DMP to demonstrate your institutionally-backed strategy for data sharing and preservation:

The data will be shared via the Data Repository for the University of Minnesota (DRUM), an open access, publicly-accessible, institutional repository. DRUM has been certified since 2017 by CoreTrustSeal, an international community-based organization that recognizes sustainable and trustworthy repositories. Curators review submissions and work with data authors to comply with data sharing requirements in ways that make data findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable (FAIR) - including, but not limited to, file transformation and metadata augmentation. DRUM commits to 10 years of long-term preservation using services such as file migration (limited format types), off-site backup, bit-level checksums, and Digital Object Identifiers (DOI) for archival citations. The DOI exposes data to online discovery tools like Google Scholar and Web of Science Data Citation Index.

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Find and access data

The Libraries subscribes to many data archives and resources to find and access essential data for your research. These registries and guides also aggregate freely available data resources for the discovery of data and statistics.

Specific data repositories

  • Data Repository for the University of Minnesota (DRUM) for the University of Minnesota, an open access repository for data authored by U of M researchers
  • ICPSR - data repository hosted by the University of Michigan related to social science data, both publicly and privately collected and published. See our guide for depositors.
  • IPUMS at the Institute for Social Research & Data Innovation - research center through the University of Minnesota with a focus on current and historical demographic data related to geography, economy, migration, health, education, and other subject areas
  • Dryad - this generalist data repository accepts submissions from any discipline. The University Libraries is an institutional member of Dryad, which means that deposit and curation costs are covered for U of M affiliates. 
  • Mukurtu (MOOK-oo-too) - empowers Indigenous communities to manage, share, narrate, and exchange their digital heritage in culturally relevant and ethically-minded ways. See also the CARE principles.

Data registries and guides

  • Libraries search for purchased or licensed data. (sort Material Type = “Statistical Dataset” or “Research Dataset”)
  • Government publications data and statistics for government information and data across disciplines and geographic areas
  • Business and economics statistics for data and statistics on company financial information, industry performance, economic data, and related topics
  • Spatial data for spatial and GIS data across disciplines, geographic units and areas, and sources
  • Health sciences resources for sources of health data and statistics
  • - registry of open research data repositories across disciplines
  • - open government data portal with access to datasets in science, agriculture, education, health, business, and many more
  • - search millions of dataset from repositories around the world in this international registry

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Good practices

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RDS data partners

Research Data Services (RDS) believes that strong institutional partnerships are crucial for supporting and advancing research and the educational mission at the UMN. We work hard to advance the research ecosystem by crossing departmental lines in communication, collaboration, and networking, both formally and informally. 

Below is a list of our UMN partners, as well as our national partners whose collaborations allow us to better advance data sharing at the UMN. If you would like to be added to our list, please reach out to start a conversation.

UMN partners

  • Data Repository for the University of Minnesota. DRUM is the institutional data repository for the UMN housed in the University Libraries. It is a publicly available collection of digital research data generated by UMN researchers, students, and staff. DRUM is part of RDS, and RDS staff members oversee DRUM and provide all curation.
  • Data Science Initiative. DSI aims to make a mark in data science research, nationally and internationally, by charting new research directions and enabling the development of new methods, data sets, and software that are used to address grand challenges facing our state, nation, and the world. One RDS member is also a member of a DSI subgroup. RDS and DSI co-hosted the 2023 UMN Day of Data Event.
  • GEMS Platform. GEMS is a secure web-based informatics service for storing, cleaning, exploring, sharing, and analyzing agro-food data.
  • Human Rights Protection Program. HRPP is a system of interdependent groups and individuals interacting to achieve a common aim to protect research participants in the conduct of human research. Two RDS members sit on HRPP’s Education Advisory Group.
  • Institutional CyberInfrastructure Group. ICIG engages and consults with a variety of campus groups to facilitate communication and collaboration related to cyberinfrastructure activities across the University system. We engage with ICIG in dialogue regarding implementation of federal funding agency policies and matters pertaining to RCC (see below).
  • Institutional Review Board. The IRB reviews research projects involving human participants to ensure adequate protection and informed consent. RDS has worked with the IRB to update their protocol and consent templates with language that allows for data sharing. We engage with the IRB in dialogue regarding implementation of federal funding agency policies and have collaborated on Requests for Information from federal funding agencies.
  • Liberal Arts Technology and Innovation Services. LATIS Research is a team of methodological and technical experts who can provide support, technology, and infrastructure for research. LATIS and the Libraries team up to comprise RDS. 
  • Masonic Cancer Center research development team. MCC’s research development team partners with faculty, trainees, and administrators to develop and submit competitive grant proposals by ensuring applicants meet sponsor guidelines and by improving the content, organization and visual appeal of proposal packages.
  • Minnesota Supercomputing Institute. MSI provides advanced research computing infrastructure and expertise to advance and accelerate research and foster innovation and discoveries. RDS and MSI connect to discuss best options for storage and data sharing for UMN affiliates.
  • Research Advancement and Development Professionals Network. RADPN is focused on the professional development, training, and networking of research advancement and development professionals at the University of Minnesota. One RDS member is also a RADPN member.
  • Research Cyberinfrastructure Champions. RCC is a cross-departmental network that helps to improve alignment and collaboration between research cyberinfrastructure service providers and the user community. Two RDS members are also RCC members.
  • Sponsored Projects Administration. SPA assists researchers with proposal submissions, grants, contracts, clinical trials, subawards, material transfer agreements, and agreements. RDS meets with SPA bi-weekly to discuss a coordinated approach to data sharing mandates.
  • Technology Commercialization. Tech Comm facilitates the protection and transfer of UMN innovation by helping to license research, patent innovative ideas, establish startups, and facilitate commercialization. RDS connects with Tech Comm to best guide researchers through patent and software licensing considerations.
  • Technology Help. OIT can help to find the right technology to help you store, manage, and work with your data and files for smooth implementation of your DMS Plan. RDS and OIT collaborate to offer a data management series called Focus on Files.
  • U-spatial. U-spatial supports geospatial research at UMN through training and technology. One RDS member attends weekly meetings, collaborating on options for data sharing, transfer, and management.

National partners

  • Data Curation Network. The DCN is a membership organization of institutional and non-profit data repositories whose vision is to advance open research by making data more ethical, reusable, and understandable. The UMN is a founding member and fiscal home for the DCN.
  • Dryad. Dryad is an open data repository and community committed to the open availability and routine re-use of all research data. UMN is an institutional member of Dryad, eliminating fees for UMN affiliates. One RDS member sits on the Dryad Big Data Working Group.
  • Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research. ICPSR maintains a data repository of research in the social and behavioral sciences. They provide leadership and training in data access, curation, and methods of analysis for the social science research community. UMN is an institutional member of ICPSR, reducing or eliminating fees for UMN affiliates.

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