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Research Data Management

General information on research data management at the University of Calgary

Welcome to the Research Guide for Research Data Management (RDM). Here you will find information on Libraries and Cultural Resources' supports for RDM, learning materials, and best practices and tools to support management of your research data. Use the menu to the left to navigate to the different sections of the Guide.

NOTE: Libraries and Cultural Resources supports data management planning, and post-project data archiving and sharing. If you are looking for data management platforms during the active phase of your research project, please contact Research Computing Services.  If you're looking for help with research data management related to a particular funding opportunity, you may wish to contact the Research Services Office. If you're not sure what kind of support you need, you may find our Research Data Management Roadmap helpful.

For assistance with a data management project, or to request a presentation for your class or group, please e-mail

What are research data? What is research data management?

Research data refers to "data that are used as primary sources to support technical or scientific enquiry, research, scholarship, or artistic activity, and that are used as evidence in the research process and/or are commonly accepted in the research community as necessary to validate research findings and results" (Tri-Agency Research Data Management Policy FAQ). Examples of research data outputs include:

  • Raw data files
  • Spreadsheets and database contents
  • Documents and photographs
  • Lab and field notebooks
  • Audio/video recordings and transcripts
  • Survey responses
  • Products generated by software (logfiles, simulations, etc.)
  • ...and more

Other products that are not data themselves, but may be essential to understanding and working with data include:

  • Questionnaires and codebooks
  • Methodology and workflow documentation
  • Software programs and their documentation

You can find a short video overview (approx. 3 minutes) on research data here.

Research data management encompasses the processes guiding the collection, documentation, storage, appropriate access and sharing, and preservation of data produced during a particular research project over the entire lifecycle of the data, from planning to long-term preservation of data deliverables. The image below shows the various stages of the research data management lifecycle:

*Image courtesy of the Digital Research Alliance of Canada.

The library's services focus on the planning, dissemination, preservation and reuse parts of this cycle.