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Guide to the DMP Assistant Template for Systematic Review Projects

Companion guide to the Portage DMP Assistant Template for Systematic Review Projects


Where will you deposit your data for long-term preservation and access at the end of your research project? 

Consider what you want to share long-term vs. what you need to keep long-term; these might be two separately stored data sets for different purposes. 

This is an important aspect to consider because systematic reviews may be rejected and need to be reworked/resubmitted, or the authors may wish to publish an updated review in a few years’ time. (this is particularly important given the increased interest in the concept of a ‘living systematic review’). 

If you plan to update the review at a later date, archiving the raw data such as citation libraries, raw data extracted for meta-analysis, coding guides, etc. is essential. Because team members come and go, and someone else may be assigned to an update, it is best to store these on a shared server or in the cloud.

A significant amount of process/procedure detail and the majority of the analyzed data will also end up in your published manuscript. Search strategies, database details and search dates may also be included as published supplementary materials alongside your manuscript. However, given that journals' practices around publishing supplements differ, the best way to ensure availability of your data is to deposit them in a repository.

There are data repositories specifically for systematic review data, for example Systematic Review Data Repository. Alternatively, if you have access to an institutional repository, this is an acceptable place to deposit your data. Otherwise, you may want to consider a discipline-agnostic research data repository such as the Open Science Framework.  

Need help choosing a repository? Use DataCite's repository finder