Funder Data Platform

Supporting data-sharing to unlock insights into research funding


Credit: The Funder Data Platform

RoRI’s Funder Data Platform (FDP) is a secure environment for data sharing and analysis by research funders in RoRI’s consortium and other partners with which RoRI collaborates.

One long term challenge for research on research has been the lack of access to high quality comparable data from funders. As a result, analysis and decision-making often rely heavily on citation data – linked to research outputs – but have blind spots with regard to funding processes and strategic investments which occur earlier in the research lifecycle.

The Funder Data Platform (FDP), originally developed by the data team at Wellcome, has the potential to remedy this problem, by providing funders with a bespoke infrastructure to share and analyse funding data collaboratively, while retaining specific controls over data access.

During RoRI’s second phase, to the end of 2027, the FDP will be developed and maintained on its behalf by the Danish Centre for Studies in Research and Research Policy (CFA) at Aarhus University, with the generous support of the Novo Nordisk Foundation. The team at CFA have extensive experience of working with this kind of data, and will work with the IT-department at Aarhus University (AU-IT) to develop the FDP as a secure and flexible resource.

Partners can upload and grant access to data for the purpose of collaborative projects. Project teams can then perform their analysis in a secure, closed environment. Once a project is completed, findings and insights can be approved for release in a range of open formats. 

The FDP is a highly practical contribution to the challenges of sharing data between research funders. Work on the platform will help to unlock new insights into research funding and decision-making—particularly around diversity and inclusion. 

Securing legal agreements to support this kind of data sharing isn’t straightforward, but we now have a series of agreements in place to support collaborations through the platform. 

Project team

Vincent Traag, CWTS-Leiden and Senior Research Fellow, RoRI

Emer Brady, CFA-Aarhus and Research Fellow, RoRI

Carter Bloch, CFA-Aarhus and Senior Research Fellow, RoRI

Partners and steering group

The FDP has a steering group chaired by Gert V. Balling, Senior Impact Partner at Novo Nordisk Foundation and Co-Chair, RoRI Partnership Board.

Research Team

Timeline and outputs

The FDP was piloted by RoRI in its CRITERIA project, which explored the relationship between evaluation criteria for funding applications and the outcomes of those applications by gender. The final outputs of this project will be published soon.

The FDP is RoRI’s largest infrastructure project and will run for the five-year duration of its second phase (to the end of 2027), and potentially beyond. 

Other related outputs include:

Woods HB and Pinfield S. Incentivising research data sharing: a scoping review. Wellcome Open Res 2021, 6:355