Data preservation and publishing in Aston Data Explorer

Aston Data Explorer is the university’s institutional repository for datasets and related research outputs, working alongside Aston Publications Explorer and Aston Research Explorer to collect, preserve and share Aston’s research.

Aston supports the principle of “as open as possible, as closed as necessary” for research data and encourages researchers to include data publishing plans in their grant applications and plans. This aids in ensuring compliance with the requirement of data access statements for published outputs resulting from UKRI funded projects.

Aston Data Explorer supports your data in becoming FAIR by making sure it is Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable. All data is archived through Arkivum, which has an ISO 27001 data security certification, ensuring that your data is secure.

Data access statements

As of April 1 2022, all publications resulting from UKRI funding will be required to include a data access statement.

A data access statement describes where the data underwriting the publication can be found, and under what conditions it can be accessed or used (e.g. whether there are any embargos in place). A data management plan can help to prepare the conditions for making data shareable at the end of the project, following the principle of “as open as possible, as closed as necessary”.

It is not always possible to make your data available to other users. Your data access statement can then include the justifications for this, for example, if it is due to ethical or legal constraints. Many funders will not accept cost as a reasonable justification for not sharing data.

Aston provides example data access statements here.

Data management planning

Thoughtful planning for effective data management will enable you to get the most out of your research, and ensure you are compliant with funder or publisher requirements.
Aston subscribes to DMPOnline, which allows you to create, review, and share data management plans that meet institutional and funder requirements. Sign up for an account, connect your institutional email, and select 'Create plan' to follow a recommended template to ensure compliance. Guidance on developing a useful and effective data management plan is available from the Digital Curation Centre. The Open Research team can offer support related to data management or depositing data. Research Funding Managers and Grants and Contract Officers can support you in developing a high quality bid. Aston University Research Integrity Office can offer guidance on research ethics, governance, and integrity.

Data storage and security

For storage of data in current research projects, consult Digital Services. We recommend that researchers follow the 3-2-1 backup rule:

  • Have at least 3 copies of your research data...
  • ...in at least 2 different locations...
  • ...and one cloud copy.

The Research Integrity Office can support you in ensuring your data is available for collaboration and in keeping with research ethics guidelines.