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Research Funder Requirements

Department of Transportation (DOT)

The Department of Transportation (DOT) is the latest federal agency to implement a data management or data sharing requirement. "All DOT-funded research proposals, intramural and extramural, must include a supplementary document labeled "Data Management Plan" (DMP). In addition to providing long-term Digital Data Set preservation and storage location information, such DMPs may also discuss why long-term preservation and/or Public Access cannot be justified, if applicable. In the DMP, researchers will propose their strategy(ies) to deposit Digital Data Sets resulting from DOT-funded Scientific Research in a repository that enables and allows for Public Access and sharing." Official DOT Public Access Plan v1.1 December 16, 2015 pdf

How does the DOT define a DMP?  The data management plan (DMP) is a document created and submitted for approval as part of the research proposal. It describes your proposed plan for how to handle the final dataset generated during your research.  The DMP is a 2-3 page narrative description, covering these areas:

  • The final research data to be produced in the course of the project;
  • The standards to be used for data and metadata format and content;
  • Policies for access and sharing the final research data, including provisions for appropriate protection of privacy, confidentiality, security, intellectual property, and other rights or requirements;
  • Policies and provisions for re-use, re-distribution, and the production of derivatives;
  • Plans for archiving final research data and other research products, and for preservation of access to them.

Elements of the data management plans (DMPs) include the following 5 areas:

  • project description;
  • standards used; 
  • access policies;
  • re-use, redistribution, and derivative products policies;
  • archiving and preservation plans.

​The DOT provides guidance on the Creating Data Management Plans for Extramural Research webpage.  There is a corresponding webpage on Creating Data Management Plans for Intramural Research which applies only for DOT researchers.

Your plan must identify a repository for your data that is accessible by the National Transportation Library (NTL); your metadata will be included in DOT Enterprise Data Inventory.  The DOT Public Access web page provides a quick summary of the basics for researchers. More in-depth information is available in the Public Access Plan FAQs

You and any colleagues or students working on your DOT-funded project will also need an ORCID number - an Open Researcher and Contributor ID. You may register for one here.

DOT provides a How to Comply checklist identifying a set of steps you will  need to take before the start of your project, during the project, and after it is completed. 

Do you have any questions or need assistance understanding the DOT requirements? We can help you with selecting an appropriate repository, answering questions about managing your rights or using a data license, requesting an embargo extension, applying the metadata schema to your data, and drafting and reviewing your data management plan.  Contact us at