What are research data?

When doing research, you often need information that you analyze to be able to answer your research question. These are research data. Research data can be quantitative, such as numbers or measurements, as well as qualitative, such as audio and video recordings.

If there are no existing research data for your specific research question, you might have to collect the data yourself. Examples of potential data sources: 


  • Interviews and transcripts
  • Sound and video recordings
  • Pictures
  • Results from computer simulations
  • Measurements from instruments (e.g. in lab experiments)
  • Geographical coordinates


You can find existing research data on the national science portal Netherlands Research Portal. The online database Statline of Statistics Netherlands (CBS) also has a lot of social-economical information and data from the Netherlands that can be useful for your research. For more information about finding existing research data, take a look at our Library Guide Discovering existing data.

Why is research data management important?

There is a lot to keep in mind when you start with your research for your internship, living lab (IWP) project, or final thesis. Such as:

  • Are there existing research data that I could use for my research? And is it possible for me to access these data?
  • How should I prepare for collecting research data myself?
  • How can I work in a secure way with (sensitive) data?

This LibraryGuide provides an overview of what you should take into account when starting a research project as a student at Hanze University of Applied Sciences (UAS), including the guidelines that apply during and after your research. Besides privacy and security, you may have to handle issues regarding intellectual property and secrecy. Moreover, it is important to organize and document your data in a consistent and comprehensible way, in order for you or your supervisor to be able to access the right version of the data.

Different phases in your research

This LibraryGuide shows you how to prepare your research according to best practices. Each phase during a research project has its own challenges. The table below shows the different topics that are covered in this guide. Click on the links in the table or choose the right tab at the top of this screen for the different topics.


Before you start

During your research: 

Data and privacy

During your research: 

Storage and sharing

After your research
  • How can you properly prepare the collection and analysis of research data?
  • What should you keep in mind when working with different types of research data? 
  • What are special categories of personal data?
  • Is it mandatory to ask for 'informed consent' and how to do so?
  • How to anonymize data
  • Where to store research data
  • How to share research data with others 
  • How to make sure you and others are able to access the right version of the data
  • What happens to the data after your research?
  • How to ensure that others are able to use the data as well