Calculation of costs associated with RDM

Costs associated with research data management count as eligible costs for many research funders and must therefore be considered as early as the proposal stage. In any case, however, RDM costs should be considered as efficient use of time and money is essential for successful project completion. In cases where researchers want to claim costs associated with RDM, many funders require a cost calculation for data management along with a DMP in the project application (e.g. personnel, infrastructure, training).

The University of Utrecht and the UK Data Service offer tools for the estimation of data management costs which might be of interest.

Potential costs associated with Research Data Management

Potential costs associated with RDM include

  • Personnel Costs (e.g. creating and updating data management plans, metadata, documentation, time that goes into data curation)
  • Infrastructure (cloud computing, data archiving, high-performance computing)
  • Software (e.g. electronic lab notebooks, licences)
  • Programming
  • Data Protection and Data Security, Legal advice
  • Costs associated to training researchers
  • Costs associated to data archiving

RDM Costs: Research Funder Policies

The FWF requires a Data Management Plan for all projects granted after 1 Jan 2019. All data collected in or for FWF-funded projects are further subject to its Open Access policy for research data. A data management plan must be submitted with the grant agreement but can be changed during the entire project runtime. Eligble data management costs include costs for data curation, archiving, Open Access and data reuse.

The European Commission mandates Open Access to publications and research data for all research projects funded within Horizon2020, as stated in article 29.3 of its Model Grant Agreement. Costs associated with open access to research outputs are therefore regarded as eligible costs. Costs associated to research data management are eligible beyond a given project provided they are included in the DMP at the proposal stage.