AHRC - Arts and Humanities Research Council

The AHRC has an Open Access policy in line with RCUK.

The Council's data policy is detailed in the Research Funding Guide (May 2015, v2.8) See in particular sections on the Technical Plan beginning on p.51, and 'Access to Data - deposit of resources or datasets' on p.99.


Time Limits

Publications should be made available as rapidly and effectively as possible via deposit in an appropriate repository at or around the time of publication.

The Archaeology Data Service (ADS) must be consulted within three months of the start of the proposed research and data must be offered for deposit within three months of project completion.

Electronic resources must remain accessible for a minimum of three years after the end of the award.

Data Plan

A technical plan is required, where digital outputs or digital technologies are an essential part to the planned research outcomes. This should give a summary of those outputs, explain the technical methodology, technical support / experience, and address preservation, sustainability and use.

The AHDS (now closed) provided guidance notes on writing the former AHRC technical appendix.

Access/Data Sharing

Publications must be made available and accessible for public use as widely, rapidly and effectively as practicable.
The AHRC requires that significant electronic resources or datasets are made available in an accessible depository for at least three years after the end of the grant.

Long-term Curation

Details required in the technical appendix cover data creation and sustainability, however there is not a specific mandate to preserve apart from in the case of archaeology. Other grant holders are expected to keep data accessible for three years. 


Compliance with the curation policy does not appear to be actively monitored, nor are penalties stated for failure to fulfil these requirements.



Support and guidance for archaeology researchers is available through the Arachaeology Data Service (ADS), which provides assistance from the grant proposal stage, throughout the project to final deposit for long-term preservation and sharing. 

Legacy guidance materials, such as subject-specific case studies and information papers are still available through the AHDS web pages for other researchers. These are not being updated, so will lose currency over time.


A publications repository is not provided by the AHRC. Researchers are expected to make use of the institutional and subject-based repositories available to them.

Data Centre

The AHRC will continue to provide a support for archaeology researchers through the ADS until 2012. ADS will apply charges for all AHRC projects due to finish during or after 2012 - see the ADS Charging Policy for details.

Data centre support for other researchers ceased with the end of funding for the Arts and Humanities Data Service (AHDS) in Spring 2008. The AHRC expects non-archaeology researchers to draw on other data centres and repositories.


Institutions are to decide whether they are prepared to use funds for any page charges or other publishing fees. Such funds could be part of an institution’s indirect costs under the full economic costing regime.
No explicit statement is made regarding the AHRC's willingness to support data management and sharing costs. However, the Techncial Plan asks how required hardware, software and relevant technical expertise, support and training will be acquired, suggesting that appropriate costs may be budgeted in to grant applications.