The Data Intensive Research Initiative of South Africa (DIRISA) recently launched its South African Data Management Planning tool (SA-DMP), which is used to create and share data management plans that meet funder requirements. Good data management enables the location, increased sharing and reuse of data, and reduces the duplication of data. These attributes of good data management reduce costs and efforts in generating data. A data management tool, coupled with sound data management practices, also supports the findable, accessible, interoperable and reusable principles of open data.
What does a Data Management Planning tool entail?
In recent years, the effective management of data within any organisation has grown in importance as organisations are subject to an increasing number of compliance regulations. As a data management and storage facility, DIRISA has incorporated the data management requirements of institutions and funders to store data by using the services of DIRISA. The data management tool developed by DIRISA supports the processes, policies, ethics and legal compliance regulations that include the following:
- Data security – compliance with data protection or security policies of the sharing institution or funder;
- Data sharing – improved discovery of data and compliance with the conditions and restrictions of shared data;
- Data destruction – the archiving and expunction of data as needed;
- Data referencing and master data management – documentation and metadata that accompany the data to assist users to understand and reuse it;
- Management of copyright and intellectual property rights – maintaining ownership and intellectual property rights, as well as restrictions on the third-party use of data; and
- Data governance – any other data policies that are applicable to the data, including the management of responsible actors in data management, and the resources that they will require to deliver on their data management plan.
Ms Nobubele Shozi, a senior researcher at DIRISA says the tool was developed by DIRISA’s software development team and is intended to become an open source tool, in the long run. She added that the tool contains the National Research Foundation’s (NRF) template that researchers can use when applying for funding from the NRF.
“Having this SA-DMP tool is essential for DIRISA as a national research data services provider,” says Dr Anwar Vahed, Director of DIRISA.
The tool can be accessed on https://secure.dirisa.ac.za/SADMPTool/