Research data policy

The University of Helsinki teaches and implements good data management practices. Every member of the University community is responsible for complying with them.

Good data management is everyone's concern

Everyone at the University must comply with ethical research guidelines on the management and sharing of research data, and must ensure the protection of confidential information, data security and data protection in accordance with legislation, good scientific practice and the University’s instructions and regulations.

Data management is part of researcher training

The University of Helsinki incorporates knowledge of research data management into the orientation of researchers and the consideration of academic merit. Faculties, departments and principal investigators are responsible for familiarising students and research staff with good data management practices. 

The University of Helsinki provides training and support in creating data management plans and in data management throughout the research lifecycle. Training is offered both as part of studies and as staff training.

The university provides a research data infrastructure

The University of Helsinki provides researchers and research groups with a research data infrastructure that includes tools and services for supporting the management, use, findability and sharing of data as well as with the capacity for storage, preservation, computing and processing.

This data infrastructure is built and developed together with national and international parties, taking into account the services and infrastructures that they offer.

Support in legal issues related to data

The University of Helsinki supports the identification and resolution of legal issues related to research data.

Principal investigators are responsible for concluding contracts on the ownership and user rights of research data at as early a stage as possible or, where applicable, before the beginning of the research project.

Data management plans and metadata

The data management plans accompanying funding applications must cover the collection and processing of data, ownership and rights to use, (long-term) storage and preservation, reuse and publishing, planned disposal and particularly the associated resource needs.

The metadata of research data must always contain their owner and any legal restrictions on their use. The processing and preservation of personal data and other sensitive material must be taken into account in data management plans.

Research data is open and available for shared use

As a rule, research data produced under the auspices of the University of Helsinki and related to published research results are open and available for shared use.

The discoverability and citability of research data must be ensured. Good practices for the attribution of authorship must be followed when using research data, and the University of Helsinki must always be indicated as the source of such data.

A fee may be charged for data sets processed for the use of business and society.

Research data policy relates to digital data

This research data policy relates to digital research data produced, used and edited in research projects.

This policy does not cover the physical resources on which research data are based (e.g., paper materials) or the use of biological research material.

The preservation of documents and materials generated in the course of research is governed by the archiving plan (in Finnish, 2013) and the criteria for the preservation of research data outlined cooperatively by Finnish universities (Tutkimustoiminta. Asiakirjat, aineistot, dokumentointi. Helsinki 1997).

The use of biological material in research is governed by separate legislation and related permits.


This research data policy was accepted in 2015.