Summary: On January 23, 2018 the Rector’s office (Rektorat) adopted Guidelines for Research data management.
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Ruhr-University Bochum (RUB) actively contributes to society through excellence in research and teaching. It provides research findings that have a relevant impact on current scientific discourse. The university recognizes that retrievable research data are essential for scientific progress and comprehensibility as well as the distribution of knowledge. These guidelines outline how data are managed throughout the data life cycle to guarantee comprehensibility and accessibility, while incorporating the ”Principles for the Handling of Research Data” issued by the Alliance of Science Organisations in Germany and the “Guidelines on the Handling of Research Data” issued by the DFG (German Research Foundation). They ensure the protection of the research process and guarantee that data will only be made available to others with the permission of the researchers.

These guidelines apply to all research data originated at RUB.


The term “research data” encompasses all data that are created through scientific processes, e.g. measurement data, laboratory values, audiovisual information, texts, survey data, objects from collections, or samples that were created, developed or evaluated during scientific work, along with methodical forms of testing such as questionnaires, software, and simulations. Depending on the research question, different methods are employed to create, collect, process, analyse and eventually publish and/or archive research data; therefore, the data may involve a wide range of media, aggregation levels and formats. Sharing and reusing research data requires documentation about the original context and about tools that were used. The large variety of research data reflects the different scientific disciplines and research methods.

Research data management includes the planning, recording, processing, and storing of research data, ensuring accessibility, reusability, reproducibility and quality of all data on which scientific results are based.


  1. Research data should be deposited in an appropriate data archive and/or published in a certified data repository. Research data are part of the university’s research output.
  2. RUB promotes open access to research data. In accordance with the university’s Open Access Resolution, RUB recommends making both academic publications and research data accessible to the public at the earliest possible time. When transferring rights of reuse or publication, research data shall remain freely accessible for scientific purposes.
  3. RUB provides and maintains an appropriate infrastructure for research data management and thus ensures that digital research data are adequately stored and reliably accessible.
  4. RUB provides advice on research data management, from the planning stage through the completion of the project. Furthermore, it provides introductional trainings and courses on the subject.
  5. For storage and archiving of digital research data, RUB’s information and IT infrastructure, or, alternatively, a recognized external or internal data repository is used.
  6. Research data management is an integral part of any research project. Researchers are responsible for managing research data in their projects.
  7. Creating a data management plan is recognized as a central part of planning a research project and therefore required beforehand. The data management plan should be updated regularly.
  8. The protection of personal data, copyright and legitimate interests of third parties shall remain unaffected thereby.