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Research Data Management

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is strongly committed to careful treatment of research data. The responsibilities with respect to Research Data Management within VU Amsterdam are formulated as follows.


1. Researchers are responsible for compliance with legal and ethical requirements regarding their research data, including review by ethics committees if necessary.

2. Researchers are responsible for ensuring that their research data are reliably, traceably and securely stored throughout the data life cycle and that they are able to report the storage location of their data to the department head, for example upon termination of their employment at VU Amsterdam. At the same time, department heads are also responsible for making agreements with researchers on such issues, see article 7 under ‘Responsibilities’ in this policy.

3. Researchers are responsible for archiving their research data for a minimum of ten years after research results are published, unless legal requirements, discipline-specific guidelines or contractual arrangements dictate otherwise. The moment of publication is defined as the first online appearance of the publication. If there is no online publication date, the formal publication date of the publisher applies. If a researcher’s employment terminates between the events of submitting a publication and the actual moment of publication, agreements must be made regarding these data archiving responsibilities according to articles 2 and 7 under ‘Responsibilities’ in this policy.

4. Researchers are responsible for being able to share their research data for scientific use and verification, by making them accessible (A in FAIR) to others, preferably and where possible with a Persistent Identifier. Before research data are shared for reuse or verification, a researcher has to make sure that this is compliant with applicable legislation and ethical requirements. When research data include personal data, an assessment must first take place to determine whether these data can be shared and if so, under which conditions. 

5. VU Amsterdam ensures that research data that are generated at VU Amsterdam are Findable (F in FAIR) by including descriptions of these datasets in the Current Research Information System (CRIS) of VU Amsterdam. Researchers’ responsibilities in this process are as follows: researchers can perform this registration themselves, or they or their research support staff can request the CRIS administrator ( to do this registration by providing the necessary information (e.g. the storage location of the dataset, author information, project information).

6. Researchers who collect and process personal data for their research, must comply with the requirements of the GDPR and the UAVG and, additionally, they must register these activities in a processing register. Keeping a record of processing activities is a legal requirement (imposed by the GDPR). Privacy Champions (login VUnet required) in the faculties are the first point of contact for support on these matters.

Department heads

7. Department heads are responsible for arranging agreements with researchers in their departments regarding the management of research data, particularly when a researcher’s employment is ending. See article 2 of this policy for more detail.


8. Faculties must establish their own Research Data Management policies which are applicable to all of their departments and institutes, and that include, where necessary, discipline-specific protocols. 

9. The dean annually reports on their faculties’ Research Data Management policies at the PO (Portefeuillehoudersoverleg or Portfolio Holder) meeting.


10. The university is ultimately responsible for compliance with all applicable legislation (primarily the GDPR and UAVG) by VU Amsterdam and researchers at VU Amsterdam. 

11. The university is responsible for providing basic Research Data Management facilities. The university also facilitates the findability of research data through the registration of datasets in CRIS (see also article 5 under ‘Responsibilities’ in this policy) and supports researchers, whenever possible, with this dataset registration process.

12. The university is responsible for providing Research Data Management training, support and advice to researchers.

More information

For more information about the support services relating to data management and data archiving, researchers at VU Amsterdam can consult the LibGuide Research Data Management. For questions researchers can contact the RDM Support Desk.