fair data fund

The FAIR Data Fund offers researchers a budget (up to €3.500) to cover the costs of making their data Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable (The FAIR principles).

Researchers and research projects from TU Delft, TU/Eindhoven and the University of Twente are eligible to apply for the fund. The Spring call for applications opens on Tuesday 1st March and ends on Thursday 31st March 2022. Applicants will be notified of the outcomes by Friday 6th May.

For more information about the FAIR Data Fund, please contact FAIRdatafund@4tu.nl.

Fair data refinement - what and why?

Fair data refinement - what and why?

4TU.ResearchData believes in the added value and benefit of making research data FAIR. It also recognises that making data FAIR requires extra work.

The 'FAIR Data Fund' offers researchers an opportunity to apply for financial aid to cover the costs of making datasets FAIR. This fund is for data that has already been created and is not for the creation of new data. It is intended for situations where there are no other resources available to make the data FAIR.

The applicant must have a demonstrable relationship with TU Delft, TU/Eindhoven and University of Twente and the dataset must have been created in affiliation with one of these institutions. The maximum financial contribution is €3.500.

Efforts to make data FAIR that can be funded include:

  • Identifying and implementing appropriate metadata standards to make data FAIR
  • Generating (meta)data documentation or adding relevant documentation to datasets
  • Anonymisation or aggregation of confidential data to make them publishable
  • Shifting from a proprietary to open data format to make data interoperable
  • Creating data visualisations (or other materials) to make datasets accessible and reusable
  • Promotion of a FAIR dataset to increase its impact and reuse (e.g. delivering a presentation about a FAIR dataset and 4TU.ResearchData at a conference).

Refining datasets to make them FAIR and available to others may:

  • Increase the quality and value of the data.
  • Make them reusable over an extended period of time.
  • Increase the visibility and the impact of the research.



Please read the eligibility criteria below before submitting your application.

  • Only researchers from TU Delft, TU Eindhoven, and/or the University of Twente can apply for the FAIR Data Fund.
  • The research dataset to be FAIRified must have been collected/created in affiliation with TU Delft, TU Eindhoven, and/or the University of Twente.
  • Applicants should present a detailed description of activities needed to make the dataset FAIR including a budget estimation.
  • If this includes the hiring of assistants, the applicant must provide details of the required hours per task and the hourly cost.
  • Applicants should indicate an estimated time deadline by which they expect the process of making their data FAIR will be complete for follow-up by 4TU.ResearchData.
  • The dataset(s) must be deposited in 4TU.ResearchData.
  • Applicants should agree to have an interview with a staff member at 4TU.ResearchData to have their application and research data showcased on the 4TU.ResearchData community website and social media channels.
  • Applicants should provide 1-2 sentences describing their application which will be published on the 4TU.ResearchData community website and social media channels.
  • To promote diversity, successful applicants (or their research groups) are not eligible to re-apply for three years since the time of their funded application.
  • Other resources (financial, or in-kind) are not otherwise available to make the data FAIR.



  • The compensation for the costs is up to €3.500 per application.
  • The fund covers expenses for time costs (i.e. hiring a student assistance, data expert, translator), necessary services (i.e. software/equipment use) and/or promotional activities. However, the applicant commits to use all resources and technical devices already existing, and only requests funds for important new acquisitions.
  • The proposed FAIR data fund budget cannot be modified after the funding is granted without a prior consultation and a written approval from 4TU.ResearchData.
  • 4TU.ResearchData offers advice during the process of making data FAIR.
  • 4TU.ResearchData will not provide support in the budgeting process.
  • 4TU.ResearchData reserves the right to claim the subsidy back should the beneficiary not meet the requirements or satisfy the conditions as stated above.

Application process

Application process

  • Applicants must complete the online form to apply for the FAIR Data Fund.
  • Full details of the information requested in the online form are provided in this pdf document.
  • Applicants must download and complete this budget template.
    Create and save your own copy of the budget template by clicking the 'Download Budget Template' at the top right of this webpage. In the Google sheet, navigate to the 'File' tab, select 'Download' and save the file in 'Microsoft Excel (.xlsx)' format. Complete and save the budget estimation for your project.
  • Completed budget estimates should be emailed to FAIRdatafund@4tu.nl as part of the application process. Applicants will be asked to confirm that they have emailed their completed budget estimate in Section 4 of the application form.

The Spring call for applications opens on Tuesday 1st March and ends on Thursday 31st March 2022.

Evaluation criteria

Evaluation criteria

  • After the submission deadline, applications will be anonymised to remove personal details (applicant name, position, institution, faculty, department and research discipline)
  • Applications are scored by three independent reviewers based on the following criteria:
    • What efforts are required to make your dataset FAIR? (Section 2, Q.12)
    • Summarise what you plan to achieve by making your dataset FAIR (Section 3, Q14)
    • Summarise how you will make your dataset FAIR beyond publishing it in 4TU.ResearchData (Maximum 500 words) (Section 3, Q15)
    • Budget estimation (Section 4, Q16)
  • Applications will be ranked based on their total score. If two or more applications receive the same score and only one can be accepted before the total budget for the call (€20.000) is maximised, reviewers will re-evaluate these application(s) and accept the application(s) from the under-represented research institution(s) within the 4TU.ResearchData repository. 
  • If an applicant submits more than one application, the application with the highest score will be accepted unless the total budget for the call has not been reached.
  • Unless further information about the dataset and/or the process of making it FAIR is needed, applicants will be notified about the outcome of their application by Friday 6th May.


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