UBC's RDM Strategy


In 2017, a Research Data Management (RDM) Task Force was convened at UBC to establish a roadmap and begin to address the Tri-Agency Statement of Principles on Digital Data Management. In January 2018 the Task Force was joined by representatives of the Tri-Agencies and Portage to discuss progress on the Tri-Agency Policy on Research Data Management; a draft of that policy was released for consultation in May of that same year.

In anticipation of the release of the final version of the Tri-Agency Policy on Research Data Management, UBC commenced a project to create an institutional strategy for Research Data Management. The project was co-sponsored by the office of the Vice-President, Research and Innovation (VPRI); UBC Library; and the Office of the Chief Information Officer (CIO). Recognizing that elements of an institutional RDM strategy are distributed across the institution and include both technical and human infrastructure guided by effective engagement with relevant stakeholders, the project steering committee includes members from across the institution.


UBC recognizes the importance of data throughout the research lifecycle and is committed to fostering excellence in Research Data Management (RDM). Research data is integral to all manner of research across all disciplines. This strategy looks at the future of research data management for all research data collected, managed, stored, and accessed during any stage of the data lifecycle, by all disciplines, system-wide. While it has been developed to ensure compliance with the Tri-Agency Research Data Management Policy, this strategy aims to define and prioritize goals as articulated by the UBC community with a five-year outlook following the RISE framework.


The purpose of the UBC Institutional RDM Strategy is to foster a culture where consideration for research data and its management is incorporated throughout research. The strategy will also support UBC researchers in adopting responsible and sustainable RDM practices and following the FAIR Principles to make research data findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable. This strategy does not propose the creation of new or altering of existing UBC policies nor is it a strategic plan. Rather, this strategy outlines areas of focus that will allow the institution to make its practices more mature and support RDM in a coordinated manner.

While recognizing that research frequently involves collaboration outside the university, this strategy represents UBC’s institutional approach to RDM. Other institutions will have different priorities and areas of focus.

As progress is made in advancing the goals as outlined in this strategy, it is expected that a re-evaluation of RDM maturity will be required to adapt and refocus the strategy over time. The research landscape, resources, and priorities will inevitably change and this strategy must change with them. It is therefore also a principal component of this strategy that it be considered a living document and should be regularly reviewed and revised.

Priorities for Action

Following extensive consultation with the UBC research community, 21 recommendations were identified regarding the future of research data management at UBC, organized across six areas of focus, or goals. Of the 21 recommendations, the strategy working group wishes to focus on six recommendations as core to the strategy’s success.

Namely, UBC should:

  • Form an implementation committee to review this strategy, prioritize and establish a plan to address these recommendations.
  • Investigate support options for researchers needing to create data management plans.
  • Establish a unified RDM knowledge hub that provides a trusted single source of information across all areas of the institution.
  • Establish a unified communication strategy across research data management service providers that is cohesive and consistent.
  • Explore centralized options to support data management plans, data security services, and research data repositories.
  • Seek continued access to appropriate storage throughout the data lifecycle for researchers, considering the unique challenges of different classifications of data.


First Nations land acknowledegement

We acknowledge that UBC's two main campuses are located on the traditional, ancestral and unceded territories of the xwmə0– kwəyˇəm (Musqueam) and Syilx (Okanagan) peoples, and that UBC’s activities take place on Indigenous lands throughout British Columbia and beyond.

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