Software and Data Management Plans

Funder requirements, Data Management Plans

Most grant proposals require a Data Management paragraph or section, describing in general if and how you plan to gather, store and archive data. When funding is awarded this paragraph has to be developed into a Data Management Plan (DMP) within a few months. The DMP is a dynamic document that should be regularly updated during the project.

Large funders provide their own DMP templates.


Most funders see software as a type of research data, and make no special provisions for it in their DMP templates. The Software Sustainability Institute (SSI) has developed a general checklist for Software Management Plans. If you wish to use this template instead of the funder’s DMP template, please co-ordinate this with the secretary of the call.


An NWO proposal must have a data management section (aka paragraph), but the content is not currently being evaluated by the committee. They may give advice however. If funding is awarded, a DMP must be submitted within 4 months which must be checked by a data manager or similar. For CWI please send a draft of your plan together with your research proposal to Vera Sarkol ( and/or Carl Schulz (

Note that NWO does not require software that has been built as the main research object to be included in the DMP. Only if the software is necessary to handle the data (where the main research object is the data) it should be included in the DMP. That means in some cases you may have an empty DMP.

If your research involves no data or software that would be useful to others or should be archived, you can declare this in the section or plan with an explanation.

Horizon 2020

Information on H2020 Data management.

Open access is the default for research data needed to validate the results presented in scientific publications. However it is possible to opt-out at any stage.

A H2020 proposal should have a paragraph on software or data management, see "Proposal Submission & Evaluation".

Once funding is approved the first version of the DMP should be submitted within the first 6 months of the project. The Commission recommends using their template but this is voluntary.

If you do opt-out you are still encouraged to submit a DMP on a voluntary basis.


ERC regulation is similar to Horizon 2020. They do not prescribe a format for a DMP but encourage the use of their template.

Other Dutch institutions have developed their own DMP templates and guides, see here for a collection.

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