Data Management Plan | Assemble+

Data Management Plan

version: February 2019

ASSEMBLE Plus participates in the “Open Research Data Pilot” initiative, which promotes open access and reuse of research data generated by Horizon 2020 projects. There are two main pillars to the Pilot: developing a Data Management Plan (DMP) and providing open access to research data.

The following requirements are important to take on board when using the services provided by ASSEMBLE Plus, with particular focus on its Transnational Access programme:

  1. Submission of a Data Management Plan
  2. Long-term storage of research data and metadata
  3. Open Access research data
  4. Open Access publications

1. Submission of a Data Management Plan

Your Data Management Plan (DMP) explains what sort of data is being collected/created and how it will be made FAIR - Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, Re-useable. This concept was developed to make science more openly accessible and to give data a life beyond the particular project it was collected for.

The idea is that people should be able to:

  • Find your data – the data must be archived, and require metadata so allowing the data to be searched
  • Access your data – the archive needs to be accessible by anyone and needs to conform to standards for data access
  • Interoperate with your data – it must be possible for people to be able to read your data, e.g. to be able to load it into accessible software
  • Re-use your data – the data should be open access, i.e. anyone can download and use it (exceptions are allowed)

How these points will be achieved is explained in your DMP. The ASSEMBLE Plus DMP is an integral part of the Activity Report, a document that is due after the on-site and/or remote access of the Transnational Access has been completed. This document is available in our Download Area as “Activity report and Data Management Plan”. The template provides suggested responses that take into account the general data management approach used in ASSEMBLE Plus. More details on DMPs can be found in the Guidelines on FAIR Data Management in Horizon 2020.


2. Long-term storage of research data and metadata

  • Data

Your data should be stored in an archive where its long-term survival is guaranteed and where other interested parties can find and – depending on the access rights set – download and use the data. For the ASSEMBLE Plus project, all data must be stored in the Marine Data Archive (MDA). You are of course free to choose any other online data repository as well. Please send an email to before you store your data in the MDA.

  • Metadata

Metadata must be stored along with your data. Metadata are descriptions of data (date, location, species, scientific topic, units, parameters, etc…) that allow to find your data, and help them interpret and re-use them. For the ASSEMBLE Plus project, metadata are added via the form used to add your data to the Marine Data Archive (MDA). Send an email to   when you are ready to place your data in the MDA and we can help you with this process.

3. Open Access research data

Open Access (OA) refers to providing, free of charge and re-usable, access to scientific information. ASSEMBLE Plus expects that data obtained during the Transnational Access programme will be made Open Access:

  1. upon publication of a scientific paper or
  2. after two years of data collection
  • Opt-outs

You can close all or some access to the data obtained if you have valid reasons (opt-outs). These data and the reasons need to be mentioned in the DMP. Examples are given in the template “Activity report and Data Management Plan” available here. More information can be found in the H2020 Guidelines to the Rules on Open Access.

4. Open Access publications

Publications resulting from the Transnational Access programme must be Open Access (free to download and read).

The best way to do this is to publish in an Open Access Journal.

Alternatively, you should use a journal that will allow a PDF of the accepted article to be archived in an Open Repository where it can be freely accessed. We have created the ASSEMBLE Plus Open Repository to allow for this second case. Instructions for storing your publication in our repository and more information about open access journals can be found here


Website developed and maintained by Flanders Marine Institute (VLIZ) | Privacy Policy