Data management

Project Data Archives

Once a project is completed and especially when findings are reported in a publication,
it is expected that the main author creates a “Project Data Archive”.

What to archive

  • All production runs: input/output files, including atomic geometries, scripts, etc.
  • Any custom source code
  • Figures: data used, final figure files (pdf, eps, bitmaps,…) and source (e.g., Origin, LaTeX-TikZ, Inkscape, Gimp, CorelDraw,…)
  • Article: source file (LaTeX, OpenOffice, Word,…)
  • Bibliography: original PDF (or any other) files of all cited references if available; BibTeX, EndNote-RIS files.
  • Any other media related to the publication: audio/video clips, software scripts, custom code used, etc.
  • All correspondence: (re-)submission related, cover letters, referees reports, author response, etc.
  • Media coverages, graphics


  • Create a separate directory for each of the above items above
  • Document your archive: create a README file that describes archive content.
    Preferably, once the archive is structured/complete run in the top-level
    tree -L 2 --charset=ascii
    and include it in the README. Annotate the tree.


  • Follow for instance the “3-2-1” rule:
    – 3 copies
    – 2 formats
    – 1 off-site
  • Provide optical disc copy to each co-author, or each separate group if multi-author, collaborative publications


Here is the README file of the “Project Data Archive” for our article on graphene dvd1_coverquantum dots in graphane:
Singh, A. K., Penev, E. S., and Yakobson, B. I., “Vacancy clusters in graphane as quantum dots,” ACS Nano 4, 3510–3514 (2010), doi: 10.1021/nn1006072

The image on the right is the DVD cover, which is also included in the archive.

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