DMPTool: Fixed things and new things

Our development efforts are mostly trained on the new Roadmap platform—the next update is just on the horizon—however, there were a few DMPTool things that deserved attention this month.


  • Assign Roles: The functionality that allows institutional admins to grant admin privileges to others was not terribly user friendly and it had a bug that prevented searching by email address. So we fixed/enhanced it with the following tweaks. You can also consult the revised help documentation on the GitHub wiki for instructions, although we hope it’s intuitive enough not to require a manual now.
    • We moved the search box to the top, where admins can now search by first and/or last name.
    • Then you click the notepad icon next to the appropriate user’s name to “Edit User Role” and check/uncheck boxes to grant/remove roles; then save the changes and voilà!
    • Admins should now see a list of ALL users affiliated with their institution.

assign roles screenshot

  • Usage Stats: We implemented a *very* primitive metrics dashboard (screenshot below). Institutional admins will see a new tab called “Usage” under the Institution Profile menu. Use the date selector at the top to view basic monthly and cumulative usage stats for your institution and for global DMPTool usage. The idea is to present this as a starting point and collect your feedback to design a bigger, better, and much more beautiful metrics dashboard in the new platform. We already plan to provide visualizations (e.g., graphs of change over time) and export to CSV in the future. Please note that you can still retrieve usage data in JSON via the API (instructions here). For now we’re keen to know what numbers and features are most useful to you so please don’t hesitate to contact us by email or create a GitHub issue.

usage stats screenshot

Bug fixes

  • When users choose to create a new plan by copying an existing plan, they will no longer be able to start with plans that use “OBSOLETE” (outdated and inactive) templates. The plans created with these templates are still in the system, accessible to their owners, and visible in the Public DMPs list if set to public visibility; you just can’t use them as a starting point for creating a new plan. Obsolete templates exist for NSF-BIO, IMLS, and USGS; in consultation with funders, we’ve updated these templates as they revise their DMP requirements.
copy obsolete plan screenshot

Users are presented with this message if they try to copy a plan created with an obsolete/inactive template.

We need API use cases!

The Egyptian god Apis, a bull deity who served as an intermediary between humans and God. From Flickr by Jan.

We need your help! We are beginning work on developing the DMPTool API (application programming interface) and need use cases. If you aren’t familiar with APIs (, I’ve attached a few slides to help explain the concept. But basically, it’s how you can get information INTO or OUT OF the DMPTool. has a great description:
In the simplest terms, APIs are sets of requirements that govern how one application can talk to another. APIs aren’t at all new; whenever you use a desktop or laptop, APIs are what make it possible to move information between programs—for instance, by cutting and pasting a snippet of a LibreOffice document into an Excel spreadsheet. System-level APIs makes it possible for applications like LibreOffice to run on top of an OS like Windows in the first place.
So what information do you want from the DMPTool? Or what do you want it to provide to other applications? You can comment on this post, email us, or add your suggestion directly to the GitHub issue tracker with the “API use cases” tag.


  • You want the number of people who have completed plans for each of the different funders at your institution.
  • You want to download all of the templates that admins at your institution have created.
  • You want the DMPTool to directly deposit a copy of a plan into your institutional repository.
  • ???