A set of values of qualitative or quantitative variables that can be measured, collected and reported, and analyzed.

Data Access Committee

A committee that reviews and authorizes applications for data access and use.

Data and Safety Monitoring Boards (DSMBs)

A system for the appropriate oversight and monitoring of the conduct of clinical trials to ensure the safety of participants and the validity and integrity of the data for conducted(multi-site) clinical trials.The data and safety monitoring functions and oversight of such activities are distinct from the requirement for study review and approval by an Institutional Review Board (IRB).

See also: Clinical Trial Monitors​

Data Asset +

A Data Asset, or Digital Asset is an entity that is comprised of data. For example, a database is a data asset that is comprised of data records. A data asset may be an output file from a system / application /  computer script / simulation, a database, document, or Web page.

Data Assets are typically defined in a Data Management Plan (DMP), based on the different stages of a data workflow. The concept of Data Assets comes from Digital Asset Management.

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Data Archive

A data archive is a facility which moves data to an environment for long-term retention. A data archive is indexed and has search facilities, enabling data to be retrieved.

Data Audit

Checking institutional practices in collecting, preserving and disseminating datasets, resulting in suggestions for improving current procedures.

Data Availability Statement​

A statement accompanying a research paper that clarifies how and where the accompanying research data is available. For some papers that could be inside the paper itself, other data availability statements contain references to data repositories. Some journals demand a data availability statement with every paper submission.

Data Backup

A copy of data. 

Data Breach

The unauthorized collection, access, use, disclosure or release of data.

Data Cleansing Zone

The area for controlled detecting and correcting (or removing) corrupt or inaccurate records from a record set, table, or database. Used mainly in databases, the term refers to identifying incomplete, incorrect, inaccurate, irrelevant, etc. parts of the data and then replacing, modifying, or deleting this dirty data or coarse data. The controlled ability to track the data modification of data(sets) is necessary for data trailing / audits, meeting conditions of certain grants and is key for monitors. The licence agreement can require that appropriate corrections are proposed/made to correct/improve the source data.

See also: Digital Research Environment (DRE)

Data Conversion

The transformation of data from one format to another.

Data Curation (research data curation, digital curation) +

Data curation is the activity of managing the use of data from its point of creation to ensure it is available for discovery and reuse in the future. 


Data Curation Lifecycle

See: Digital Curation Lifecycle

Data Curation Profile

A document with organized information about the content and context of the creation and use of a dataset.

Data Custodian

A skilled person responsible for the safe custody, transport, storage of the data and implementation of business rules; responsible for the technical environment and database structure.

See also: Data Steward

Data Destruction

All necessary steps to ensure that data is no longer stored or able to be used.

Data Diode

A unidirectional network (also referred to as a unidirectional security gateway or data diode) is a network appliance or device allowing data to travel only in one direction, used in guaranteeing information security. They are most commonly found in high security environments where they serve as connections between two or more networks of differing security classifications. A means to directly ingest data pushed from an external source into a file/database in the Data Landing Zone of a workspace in a safe and easy way.

Data Discovery

The ability to discover data in known data files / sets. The discovery can return data usage policies/governance, meta data, samples and is tied into a formal data request procedure if this is applicable.

See also: Big Data

Data Donor

The individual whose data have been collected, held, used and shared.

Data Embargo

Data submitted to public repositories but not available for download until a certain time.

Data Format or File Format

The way in which data/information is coded and stored. A file format gives information on how to process the data.

Data Interview

The conversation a data consultant has with a researcher to obtain necessary information about a dataset.

Data Lab

A data lab is a virtual research environment which enables researchers to organize and share their research data and related output during their research project.

Data Landing Zone

A place where the data owner places data and where the data cannot be changed. The landing zone contains two parts. A log of who provided when what data and the data + licence agreement.The licence agreement isconditions are inherited from the source and a direct derivative of the governance provided by the research question.

See also: Data Cleansing Zone, Data Sharing Zone, Data Zones
Click here for linked document

Data Linkage

The process by which records representing the same entity or individual are linked across multiple data sources.

Data Management Plan (DMP)

A written agreement stating which data will be saved, how they will be saved (file format, version control, metadata), whether data will be submitted to a repository and under which terms.

Data Migration

The process of transferring data between storage types, formats, or computer systems. It is a key consideration for any system implementation, upgrade, or consolidation.

Data Portal

A gateway to data.

Data Protections

The set of laws, policies and procedures that aim to minimize intrusion into people’s privacy, uphold confidentiality, and penalize undue intrusions and/or breaches.

Data Repository

A logical (and sometimes physical) partitioning of data where multiple databases which apply to specific applications or sets of applications reside.

Data Seal of Approval

A certification for repositories that are committed to archiving and providing access to scholarly research data in a sustainable way.

Data Security

The protection of the confidentiality, availability and integrity of data.

Data Sharing

Extending access to data for the purpose of research or analyses.

Data Sharing Policy

An institutional policy concerning the sharing of research data. It is often written as a letter of intent declaring that research data will be submitted to dedicated repositories as soon as possible, complying to international data and exchange formats.

Data Sharing Zone

A place where a workspace user can put data to be shared; this includes archiving of the study. The data in the Data sharing zone cannot be modified, only be deleted by a workspace user. The Data sharing zone contains three parts: Meta, log and Data & Conditions. The difference with a data landing zone, is who is in control of the data: data landing zone = supplier/owner of the data; data sharing zone = workspace user.

See also: Data Cleansing Zone, Data Landing Zone, Data Zones
Click here for linked document

Data Steward +

A person responsible for assuring the quality, integrity, and access arrangements of data and metadata in a manner that is consistent with applicable law, institutional policy, and individual permissions.

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See also: Data Custodian

Data (or Material) Transfer Agreement

A binding legal agreement between the provider and the recipient of data (or materials) that sets forth conditions of transfer, use and disclosure.

Data Zones

A workspace has different data zones to ensure audit trail of the data and ease of use.

See also: Data Cleansing Zone, Data Landing Zone, Data Sharing Zone


Data and information that are managed and stored in a systematic way to enable data analyses.


A collection of data which may be a subset in a database.

Dataset Merger

User friendly tooling to merge different data sets even when the datasets originates from different sources.

Click here for linked document


The removal or alteration of any data that identifies an individual or could, foreseeably, identify an individual in the future. 


Digital curation

See: Data curation


Digital Competence Centre (DCC)

In Digitale Competentie Centra, of Digital Competence Centers (DCC’s), vinden onderzoekers ondersteuning en technologische hulpmiddelen op het gebied van onderzoeksdata, 
onderzoekssoftware, en open- en FAIR-data. Lokale DCC’s binnen kennisinstellingen vormen het eerste aanspreekpunt voor onderzoekers. Onderlinge uitwisseling van kennis en 
technologie kan worden gestimuleerd door middel van een veilig en gefedereerd netwerk en het oprichten van thematische DCC’s. NWO wil de ontwikkeling van DCC’s stimuleren
bron: NWO rapport: integrale aanpak voor digitalisering in de wetenschap, november 2019

DCC voorbeeld.JPG

Digital Curation Lifecycle

Digital curation and data preservation are ongoing processes, requiring considerable thought and the investment of adequate time and resources. You must be aware of, and undertake, actions to promote curation and preservation throughout the data lifecycle.​​

(Digital) Identity

This is information on an entity (object) used by computer systems to represent it. This object may be a person, organisation, application, or device. Commonly, it is defined as a set of attributes related to an object.​

Digital object

An entity in which one or more content files and their corresponding metadata are united.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

A type of persistent identifier used to uniquely identify objects. The DOI system is particularly used for electronic documents such as journal articles. The DOI system began in 2000 and is managed by the International DOI Foundation.

See also: Persistent Identifier (PID)​

Digital Research Environment (DRE)

A environment where a researcher has access to and work with all his relevant data, analytics and tooling. This environment is secure, self-serviced, is capable of real-time collaboration, provides data and process audit trails, and is auditable compliant with all the rules & regulations. Where the DRE centers around the data user, the RDP centers around the data supplier/owner.

See also: Analytics to Data​, Data Cleansing Zone, Data Diode, Data Landing Zone, Data Sharing Zone, Dataset Merger, Research Data Architecture, Research Data Platform (RDP), Workspace​, Virtual Research Environment (VRE)

Directory service

This service is a shared information infrastructure for administering network resources (objects) like volumes, folders, files, users, groups, devices, etc. Information about an object is stored as attributes. For instance, directory services enables the sharing of information about users and IT services throughout the network, which can be used in access control.​


The revelation of confidential information about an individual.

Disclosure Risk

The possibility of confidential information being revealed about an individual.

See also: Risk​

DRE Configurator

To create and maintain workspaces. From a template OS, type and amount of storage, memory and compute. Maintaining who has access to the workspace and in what role.


DRE Showcase

A project that clearly demonstrates the functionality in a for the target group meaningful way. • Supporting the science community using a federal approach • Integral approach of research and care/application • Integral data management in a single cohesive, compliant digital research environment • ‘Research Environment as a Service’ • Supporting standards and best practices • Self-service and unburdening (compliance on the background) • Flexible and scalable (also small studies with small budgets).

See also: Showcase Approach, Showcase​

Dutch shared RDM architectural principles

RDM architectural principles and guidelines which are agreed upon on a national level by dutch academic (research) institutions.