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Research Guides

Research Data Management: Wrapping Up: Preserving & Archiving Your Data

Guide of resources related to the many aspects of research data management. Data management encompasses the processes surrounding collecting, organizing, describing, sharing, and preserving data.

Why might I archive my data?

Archiving research data after the completion of projects is important for several reasons:

  • Long-Term Preservation: Archiving ensures that research data is preserved for future reference, preventing loss due to accidents, hardware failures, or changes in institutional affiliations.

  • Reproducibility: Archived data allows other researchers to verify the findings of the original study and to reproduce the results. This is critical for building upon and ensuring the reliability of existing research.

  • Compliance with Funding and Publishing Requirements: Many funding agencies and journals require researchers to archive their data as a condition for funding or publication. Archiving data after project completion ensures compliance with these requirements and facilitates broader dissemination of research findings.

  • Promotion of Open Science: Archiving data aligns with the principles of open science, fostering transparency, accessibility, and inclusivity in research practices.

What options exist for archiving my data?

Before archiving, organize your research data in a systematic and structured manner. Create clear and descriptive file names and folder structures to facilitate easy navigation and retrieval. Document the data thoroughly, including information such as data collection methods, variables, and any relevant metadata. Read about this preparation in greater detail in our guides to Organization and Format and Metadata and Documentation. You will also need to think about which and how much of your data you will archive beforehand.

Many data sharing sites can also work as archiving sites (like Dryad), however not every sharing site has the commitment to ongoing maintenance required to ensure the long term preservation of your data. The following data repositories/archives my be suitable for your data archiving need. However, make sure to check their funding and preservations strategies work for your project before selecting one

Tools & Resources


If you have questions about preserving data or would like to request a consultation with a member of the Scholarly Communications and Publishing Team, please email