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Research Data Management at AIHR

Here you will find the UvA guidelines for Research Data Management. The UvA provides support to all researchers at UvA by giving them access to a new research data management system: UvA Figshare.

Research Data Management (RDM) policies

The development of the FAIir-principles (https://www.go-fair.org/fair-principles/), the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (https://ec.europa.eu/info/law/law-topic/data-protection/data-protection-eu_en), the Netherlands Code of Conduct for Research Integrity (https://www.vsnu.nl/files/documents/Netherlands%20Code%20of%20Conduct%20for%20Research%20Integrity%202018.pdf), and stricter requirements by research funding bodies made it necessary to update the UvA Research Data Management Guidelines.

On 15th January 2020, the Executive Board established new UvA Research Data Management Guidelines (https://rdm.uva.nl/en/planning/uva-policy/uva-and-auas-policy.html). The central guidelines indicate the minimal requirements for the data management protocols of the faculties.  To justify difference between disciplines additional Faculty protocols are necessary. On 7th July 2020, the Dean of the Faculty of Humanities established the FGw Research Data Management Protocol [link below].

In both the new UvA guidelines and the Faculty protocol, responsibilities are clearly distributed over four levels: researchers, institute directors, faculty board, and university. Furthermore the responsibilities are divided into three phases: before, during and after the research.

Before the research

Data Management Plan
Before starting a new research project, the researcher draws up a data management plan (DMP). In the DMP, the researcher specifies what kind of data will be collected, how it is collected, stored and processed. The researcher also indicates how the data is going to be shared, archived and published. For externally funded projects, such as by NWO and the EU, the DMP can be a strict requirement to be able to start with the project.

DMPonline (https://dmponline.dcc.ac.uk/) is an online tool you can use to draw up a data management plan before the start of your research. DMPonline contains various templates for DMPs, such as the UvA template or templates of different funding bodies.

Working with personal data

Some research projects work with human participants, using questionnaires, interviews, experiments or observations to obtain information. Working with participants in most cases leads to the collection and processing of personal data. Personal data is any kind of data that can be traced back to a natural person.

If personal data is collected and processed, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) applies. The GDPR is EU legislation on data protection and privacy aimed to protect people with regard to the processing of their personal data.

When working with participants and/or personal data, the project needs approval from the Faculty’s Ethics Committee (https://aihr.uva.nl/about-aihr/ethics-committee/ethics-committee.html) before the research starts. To register your project for an ethics review go to https://rr.uva.nl.   

In short, for the collection and processing of personal data informed consent from the participants is necessary. The data collected should be minimised, meaning that you only collect personal data which is strictly necessary to accomplish the research goals. Personal data should be stored encrypted, preferably on UvA storage, and only kept for as long as it is necessary for its purpose. When publishing data, personal data needs to be anonymised or if that is not possible pseudonymised. For more details on how to work with personal data in research see the Instructions on Ethics and GDPR [link below].

FAQs about the GDPR: https://medewerker.uva.nl/en/content-secured/az/privacy/guidelines/the-gdpr-and-research/faq-gdpr-and-research/faqs-gdpr-and-research.html

During the research

In addition to complying with laws and regulations, good research data management has further advantages during your research project.

  • Safety: loss or unauthorised use of your data is minimised and you can securely share data with others.
  • Organisation: clear file structures and metadata standards provide a better overview and searchability of your data, in particular when working in a team.
  • Impact: publication, reuse and citation of your data contribute to the impact and verifiability of your research.

The UvA provides the following facilities to support safe data storage, exchange and management for research projects:

Personal storage

Group storage and collaboration

Further information on UvA storage facilities: https://rsp.uva.nl/en/execute/saving-data/saving-data.html

After the research

When a research project is completed, research data needs to be archived and, if possible, made publicly available. The publication of research data requires anonymisation or, if not possible, pseudonymisation of personal data (see section “working with personal data”). For archiving, controlled sharing and publication of research data the UvA provides UvA/HvA Figshare. For registration of your articles and other publications the UvA uses Pure (see below).

In UvA/HvA Figshare you can archive your research data safely and still have access: your files are stored on ISO certified servers in Switzerland, and you can access them from any computer with an internet connection.

Advantages of using UvA/HvA Figshare:

  • Any file format can be archived.
  • The storage is free for researchers and, in principle, unlimited.
  • You can allow others to access files you have stored in Figshare. Those others may be UvA colleagues, but also students, colleagues from other institutions within and outside of the Netherlands, partners from business or societal organisations.
  • Via Figshare you can easily publish your data, embargoed if necessary.
  • Your file is assigned a Digital Object Identifier (DOI), a unique permanent link you can use in articles and presentations.

Go to UvA/HvA Figshare: https://uvaauas.figshare.com/

For security reasons the so-called two factor authentication is required: you log in with your UvAnetID, and each time confirm your identity with a code you receive on your phone.

More information on UvA/HvA Figshare: https://rdm.uva.nl/en/uva-auas-figshare/introduction.html

Pure is the system for registering research publications and activities at the University of Amsterdam. Publications registered in Pure will automatically appear on your personal UvA page. Datasets which are published on Figshare will automatically be registered in Pure.

Go to Pure: https://pure.uva.nl/admin   

More information on Pure: https://uba.uva.nl/en/support/research/registering-research/registering-research.html

Research Data Management for students and PhD candidates

As stated in the FGw Research Data Management Protocol [link PDF], supervisors are responsible for managing research data collected by their students and for instructing them on how to handle research data. If approval from the Ethics Committee is needed (when participants or personal data is involved), the supervisor needs to register the project in the Ethics Data Management Review Portal [https://rr.uva.nl]. After the project is registered, students can fill out the questionnaires and upload documents. The supervisor has to submit the project to the Ethics Committee. 

Prior to their defence, PhD candidates must ensure that the research data on which their thesis is based are available to the UvA, e.g. by publishing it and/or archiving it in UvA Figshare.

PhD candidates are strongly advised to follow the Research Data Management Training for PhD candidates offered by the Library in the beginning of their project.

RDM Training for PhD candidates: https://aihr.uva.nl/phds-in-the-humanities/skills-development-training-at-the-graduate-school/phd-skills-courses/research-data-management.html

Projects with external partners

When collaborating with partners who are not affiliated with the UvA, it is possible that personal data which you collected as an UvA staff member will be processed by external partners. If this is the case, a processing agreement needs to be signed to ensure the safe and correct handling of the personal data according to the GDPR. Contact the Data Steward if you intent to share personal data with external partners.

More information on processing agreements and a model processing agreement can be found here: https://medewerker.uva.nl/en/content-secured/az/privacy/processing-agreements/processing-agreements.html

Leaving UvA

When you are leaving UvA at the end of your employment or due to retirement, agreements about access and availability of your research data should be made with the university. The responsibility to manage research data stored in Figshare will be handed over to the Data Steward when you are leaving UvA. For research data stored elsewhere individual agreements need to be made.

Support

For questions about RDM, access to the systems or advise on practical management of Figshare you can contact the Data Steward of the Faculty of Humanities, Hanna Fricke at datasteward-fgw@uva.nl or the RDM team at the UB at rdm-support@uva.nl

Further RDM information and support at university level
Research Data Management: https://rdm.uva.nl/en/  
Research Support Portal: https://rsp.uva.nl/en/