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Archiving of research documents

Research is one of the University’s core activities. Documents generated by research are part of the University’s public records. It is therefore important for legal, administrative and scientific reasons that the documentation of our research is properly archived.

Who owns research material?

Research conducted at a university is a public authority activity, and the documents produced during research, therefore, belong to the university. This applies even if you, as a researcher, receive external funding. As a researcher, you may not take your research documents with you from the University when you change jobs or retire, for instance. You do, however, own the intellectual property rights to your results and conclusions. You are free to bring these with you, but not the original documents (applies to electronic documents as well as printed documents).

Who is responsible for managing research material?

As with records management in general, the formal responsibility lies with the head of department or equivalent manager. In practice, however, it is often researchers who handle much of their own research material. This creates a risk, therefore, that documents will not be managed in accordance with the department’s general records management practices. An ongoing dialogue between managers, administrators and researchers is important to establish procedures for the management of research documents.

As a researcher, you will generally always be the one who best understands your material, and therefore it is also important that you describe, sort, label and name your documents in a way that is understandable even to an outsider. For electronic documents, it is important always to include metadata.

Read more about the naming of files and metadata on the page Electronic archiving.

Preservation and destruction of research documents

As with other public documents at Lund University, the preservation and destruction of research documents is regulated by the Records Management Plan.

Open the Records Management Plan, in Swedish (PDF, 3 MB, new tab).

In addition to the Records Management Plan, there are also specific plans for the destruction and preservation of research documents. These disposal and preservation plans are locally applied decisions on how to implement the Swedish National Archives’ regulations.

There is an overall plan for all research documents at Lund University. In addition to this, there are specific plans for the destruction and preservation of documents for the Faculties of Humanities and Theology, the Faculty of Medicine and the Faculty of Social Sciences. You must follow the plan that applies to your faculty. If your faculty does not have its own plan, you should follow the overall University plan for the destruction and preservation of documents.

Keep in mind that research funding bodies may have stricter requirements for the preservation of research data in individual projects than those stated in the Records Management Plan or in the University’s disposal regulations.




University Archives
universitetsarkivet [at] legal [dot] lu [dot] se
+46 46 222 16 70
Monday–Friday 09.00-11.30

Mailing address
Lund University
Records Management and Archives
Box 117
221 00 Lund

Internal mailing code: 62

Visiting address
Porfyrvägen 20
224 78 Lund