Bridging the Research Data Management Gap

Research Data Management (RDM) is essential to Canadian researchers’ capacity to securely preserve and use their research data throughout their research projects, reuse their data over the course of their careers and, when appropriate, share their data.  

The Tri-Agency policy on RDM will require researchers to submit data management plans (DMPs) as part of their grant proposals.

DMPs describe: 

  • How data will be collected, documented, formatted, protected and preserved
  • How existing datasets will be used and what new data will be created over the course of the research project
  • How data will be shared
  • Where data will be deposited

    By Spring 2022, the agencies will identify the initial set of funding opportunities subject to the DMP requirement. The agencies will pilot the DMP requirement these targeted funding opportunities before a broader rollout. 

    By Spring 2023, institutions will articulate and publish an RDM strategy. A key part of developing the strategy is to identify the gaps between current RDM practices and resources at Waterloo and an ideal future state. Together as a community we will bridge the gap between where we are and where we want to be with an RDM strategy that meets the needs of Waterloo researchers.

Working Group

The Research Data Management Institutional Strategy Working Group was created at the University of Waterloo by the Vice-President, Research & International (VPRI), the University Librarian, and the Chief Information Officer in 2021.

To meet the needs of researchers and to comply with the Tri-Agency Policy on RDM, the working group will collaboratively develop an institutional RDM strategy which will:

  • Promote research excellence within the university and research community through the adoption of good data management practices
  • Support the University in evaluating our current capacity in the area of RDM
  • Identify what changes are needed in order to comply with funder policies and other RDM requirements
  • Define a roadmap to develop institutional capacity for research data stewardship
  • Facilitate the accessibility of research data storage, retention, and availability for access and reuse 

Main Strategy Components

Puzzle being put together

  • Assemble your strategy development team
  • Assess the current state of RDM
  • Envision the future state of RDM
  • Articulate a desired near-to-medium-term future state for RDM on your campus
  • Articulate your institution’s path forward

Working Group Members

Ian Milligan,   Associate Vice-President, Research Oversight and Analysis co-chairAlison Hitchens,  Associate University Librarian, Collections, Technology, Scholarly Comms co-chair

Diane Johnston,  Associate Vice-President, Research and International Management ServicesBruce Muirhead, Associate Vice-President, Research and InternationalLeslie Copp, Director, FANS (CIHR Project Grants) Sara Anderson, Manager, Research Program Development and Partnerships, Indigenous Initiatives Neil McKay, Director, Research Systems and Analytics, Office of Research Wendy de Gomez, Research Analysis and Proposal Development Officer, Engineering Julie Joza, Director, Research Ethics Jason Testart, Director, Information Security Services Sandra Keys, Liaison Librarian, Information Services and Resources, Porter

Kathy Szigeti, Liaison Librarian, Information Services and Resources, Davis Joel Dubin, ProfessorChristina Kroeker


  1. 2021
    1. Jul
      1. Working Group Formed
    2. Oct
      1. Inititate Interviewing Professors/Researchers
  2. 2022
    1. Jan
      1. Circulated Survey
    2. Apr
      1. Forming Advisory Group
    3. Dec
      1. Complete draft strategy
  3. 2023
    1. Mar
      1. Publish Strategy


Articles or more information


Workshops or training

  • Webinar | Thinking Out Cloud: How the Cloud Is Transforming Research
    • USA perspective on cloud computing for researchers
  • Compute Canada Federation HSS Series 2022 (February 22 - 25)
    • Introductory digital research series for humanitites and social scriences (HSS) researchers where advanced digital tools available through the Compute Canada Federation as well as RDM support and best practices are discussed
  • Portage Training Resources Portal
    • Range of training materials - everyting from one-page guides to online traning modules and videos - that span the research data life cycle
    • Self-directed online modules provide an introduction to research data, data management plans, organizing data, files formats and transformation, documentation and metadata, storage and security
  • Repository Options in Canada: A Portage Guide
    • Provides detailed information to help researchers and data professionals determine the most appropriate option for their data, with a particular focus on Canada's two developing national repository platforms: the Federated Research Data Repository (FRDR) and Dataverse

Frequently Asked Questions


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