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Data Management for Wits: Requirement for NRF GRANTS

The following is general advice,data varies hugely between types of research and projects.

Why are we being asked to give away our DATA

If you want to question the NRF themselves we can't answer for them but we can point you to the full text of the open access statement below as well as the material linked below

What we can say is that this is an international trend, most funders have this requirement and that the NRF took this step as part of its obligations in the international collaborations that South Africa subscribes too.

The reality is that data collection is extremely expensive. As funding has gotten tighter, the funders are looking for more 'return on data".To get that they want data reused and shared so they have subscribed to FAIR.We are committed to the best outcome for our researchers in any funding environment., We are also more than willing to advocate for you or your research if you can show it should not be shared.

 

NRF FAQ

Does this apply to students ?

As far as we currently know this applies to any NRF funded individual
BUT ITS MY DATA

Its still your data but you do need to make a plan to share, store and preserve it.

Does this mean my data is open access if I have NRF funding?

No, it means you need to write a data management plan that the NRF will pass. There are all kinds of variation of access types in sharing data. Write your plan and think about a right solution for your specific data.

What data must be deposited ?

The data supporting the publication will need to be deposited. The common definition is that this data means all data necessary to replicate the results reported in a paper. This often includes software, additional documentation (e.g. codebooks) and detailed methodology. Data must come with basic metadata or it cannot be formally deposited. 

Where must the data be deposited?

The NRF requires that data

“Be deposited in an accredited Open Access repository,with the provision of a Digital Object Identifier for future citation and referencing.”

Wits data store is registering as an accredited repository and can provide DOI’s for citation. This data needs to be deposited in the university repository, whether or not the full text of the paper is published or under embargo (i.e. access restricted).  However, ethical and legal considerations mean that while the data is deposited, it will have to be licensed for sharing on a case by case basis.  

BUT I CANT DEPOSIT IT , MY ETHICS COMMITTEE SAID NO

Ethical issues impose additional management issues such as security or the use of enclaves.Sensitive data can be shared

in a controlled manner which complies with the funder’s requests, as well as ethical requirements.The metadata will be published in the university’s repository and point to human subject data sitting in another more secure location. We also write data access statement and the library can try to make the data anonymous. We always refer all data requests back to a procedure that goes via the ethics committee.

I promised to destroy the data

If you have written a data management plan and it's been approved then the library can advise you on how to certify the destruction of data. However, depositing to secure storage can be an alternative to deleting the data.

How to manage a grant

Gate Data project

The government actions in terror environments(gate) data project is a multi-institutional effort to collect and code data on state action toward terrorist organizations or their constituencies in select countries.to date, the gate database is the most comprehensive source of information on how governments respond on a day-to-day basis to terrorist violence.

Josef Korbel School of international studies

Our mission is to educate skilled, ethical, and  innovative global leaders who think critically and advance the common good

National Institute for Communicable Disease(NICD)

A lot of time and energy goes to the cleaning and vetting of the data here.

"GERMS-SA is a nationwide network of clinical microbiology laboratories (in the public and private-sector) which participate in an active laboratory-based surveillance programmer for pathogens of public health importance. Annually approximately 50 labs that do a culture on CSF and blood send us specimens (from both private and public sector), however, the drainage area for our surveillance specimens includes all ~150 NHLS microbiology laboratories as there is a set referral system for the flow of microbiology cultures.GERMS-SA relies not only on participating laboratories to submit isolates, but also makes use of the NHLS Corporate Data Warehouse to ensure that all cases meeting the case definition are included in the database."

What to do If you have NRF funding

If you have NRF funding you have to deposit data

The first step is to create a data management plan( currently the NRF data management plan is in development and is a pilot version however it is active.We can email you a secure link). The data supporting the publication will need to be deposited then the type and kind of data publication need to be decided on. That data will be detailed in a Data Management Plan. If you are doing a larger or ongoing project then you will probably have to make a plan to deposit a set of data rather than versions or subsets.

How to meet your requirements

Wits data store is registering as an accredited repository and can provide DOI’s for citation.This data needs to be deposited in the university repository, whether or not the full text of the paper is published or under embargo (i.e. access restricted). However, ethicals and legal considerations mean that while the data is deposited, it will have to be licensed for sharing on a case by case basis. 

Contact the Data Services Librarian to organize SECURE data deposit  Ethical issues impose additional management issues such as security or the use of enclaves. Sensitive data can be shared in a controlled manner which complies with the funder’s requests, as well as ethical requirements.

The metadata will be published in the university’s repository. It is possible and may be advisable to publish the data in a specialized repository as well as in the institution’s repository. In most cases, we do not publish the data with the metadata, rather we link the datasets in specialized storage to the metadata. There is no limit as to how many times data can be deposited and in multiple ways.

Full text of the NRF Open Access statement

Statement on Open Access to Research Publications from the National Research Foundation (NRF)-Funded Research

Background

The National Research Foundation (NRF) was established through the National Research Foundation Act (Act No.23 of 1998). As an independent statutory agency, the organization promotes and supports research in South Africa largely through the country’s Higher Education Institutions (HEIs), National Research Facilities and Science Councils with a view to generating knowledge and promoting high-level research capacity within the National System of Innovation (NSI).Supporting scientific research through public funding is important for growing the knowledge economy, promoting innovation and stimulating appropriate development. The publication of NRF-funded research outputs contributes to the knowledge base of the country. Open access to this knowledge base facilitates:

  • Dissemination of knowledge
  • Utilization/uptake/application of this knowledge
  • Accelerated transformation and globalization of science
  • The rapid transformation of this knowledge into innovative and developmental applications for the benefit of society.

Statement

The NRF recognizes the importance of Open Access to science and research while at the same time appreciating that Open Access will continue to evolve in response to societal needs, achieving overarching policy harmonization and new innovative publishing business models.

From 01 March 2015, authors of research papers generated from research either fully or partially funded by NRF, when submitting and publishing in academic journals, should deposit their final peer-reviewed manuscripts that have been accepted by the journals, to the administering Institution Repository with an embargo period of no more than 12 months. Earlier Open Access may be provided should this be allowed by the publisher. If the paper is published in an Open Access journal or the publisher allows the deposit of the published version in PDF format, such version should be deposited into the administering Institutional Repository and Open Access should be provided as soon as possible.

In addition, the data supporting the publication should be deposited in an accredited Open Access repository, with the provision of a Digital Object Identifier for future citation and reference.

The NRF encourages its stakeholder community, including NRF’s Business Units and National Research Facilities, to:

  • Formulate detailed policies on Open Access to publications and data from its funded research
  • Establish Open Access repositories
  • Support public access to the repositories through web search and retrieval according to international standards and best practice.

The NRF requires its relevant Business Units and National Research Facilities to actively collaborate with relevant government departments and public higher education and research institutions to facilitate Open Access to publications generated from publicly funded research. The NRF requires its stakeholder community to actively seek collaboration with the international scientific community to facilitate the Open Access of publications generated from publicly funded research across the world.