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Funders' research data policies

The Concordat for Open Research Data

The Concordat for Open Research Data has been developed by a multi-stakeholder group consisting of researchers, universities, funders and publishers, the British Library and Universities UK. It sets out 10 clear and practical principles for working with research data and assumes that open research data are those research data that can be freely accessed, used, modified, and shared.

The principles in the Concordat recognise that research data should, wherever possible, be made openly available for use by others in a manner consistent with relevant legal, ethical, disciplinary and regulatory frameworks and norms, and with due regard to the costs involved.

They are designed to help the research community to demonstrate that they:

  • are acting in an appropriate manner concerning research data,
  • conform to all ethical, legal and professional obligations relevant to their work,
  • nurture a research environment that makes data open wherever practical and affordable,
  • use transparent, robust and fair processes to make decisions concerning data openness,
  • have appropriate mechanisms in place to provide assurances as to the integrity of their research data, and
  • recognise the importance of data citation and credit acknowledgement.

All UK research councils, the Wellcome Trust, HEFCE, HEFCW, as well as Cancer Research UK, the Scottish Funding Council and the Natural History Museum have subscribed to the Concordat and expect their members and grant holders to commit to its principles.

Funder specific Policies

The pages listed below summarise information about policies for some of the major research funders. A useful resource for information about other funders' open access policies for publications and research data is Sherpa Juliet. We are happy to help with any questions about any funders' open data requirements.

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI, former RCUK)


Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)


Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)


Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)


Economic and Social Research council (ESRC)


Medical Research Council (MRC)


Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)


Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC)




Other funders


Cancer Research UK


Horizon 2020 (H2020)


National Center for the Replacement, Refinement & Reduction of Animals in Research


National Institutes of Health (NIH)


National Institute for Health Research (NIHR)


National Science Foundation (NSF)

The Royal Society

The Royal Society

Wellcome Trust

Wellcome Trust



Please don't hesitate to contact the RDM team for further information and advice.