HRK General Meeting on research data management: the responsibility of the universities and the policy-makers

12. November 2015

Digital data is becoming increasingly important for research. Researchers need an environment in which they can share and use this data legally, efficiently and without any complications. A comprehensive recommendation adopted by the General Meeting of the German Rectors' Conference (HRK) on Tuesday in Kiel shows how university management can further the cause of research data management – a task which the body had already declared a key strategic challenge for leaders in higher education in May 2014.

However, the recommendation also makes it clear that it is the responsibility of policy-makers to create the framework conditions for a cost-efficient research data management system which is coordinated with its national and international counterparts and which will be sustainable in the long term. The General Meeting is urging those responsible in the federal government and the federal states to assume a coordinating role in establishing overarching infrastructures for research data management and also to secure the necessary funding.

The HRK sees stronger cooperation as crucial on every level and is therefore calling for the funding to be arranged in such a way that it creates additional incentives for universities to work together, both within federal states and also beyond their borders. According to the HRK, the federal states should cooperate in more joint initiatives. At the same time, the HRK also believes that use must be made of the opportunities for cooperation between the federal government and the federal states in accordance with the revised Article 91 b of the Basic Law.


Text of the recommendation