May 23, 2022

OCLC Research Releases New Report on the Sustainability of Research Data Management by Libraries

The new report is titled, “If You Build It, Will They Fund? Making Research Data Management Sustainable” and was written by Ricky Erway and Amanda Rinehart

From OCLC Research:

2016-01-19_17-30-22Some research libraries have been proactive in taking on the new role of supporting the research data management needs of researchers and the university, whereas others have been assigned this role without having sought it. Either way, additional financial or personnel resources rarely are in place to implement and sustain this activity. This brief document explores the pros and cons of seven possible funding sources. It also describes the current circumstances in seven countries outside the United States.


  • Because some research data is a valuable university asset, institutions should build ongoing funding into their base budgets to provide resources to the units responsible for managing that asset.
  • The seven funding strategies include obtaining institutional budgetary support, adding to grant budgets, charging data depositors, charging data users, establishing an endowment, using existing funding for data repository development and making do with existing budgets.
  • Another option is to outsource to external data repositories, although many make no effort to meet digital preservation standards.

Direct to Full Text Report (13 pages; PDF)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.