Research Data Acquisition Grant

The SMU Libraries Research Data Acquisitions Grant supports research at SMU and expands the range of data sets available to researchers. The grant will purchase data sets for qualifying recipients when their needs cannot be met within our policy for data. Grants are awarded twice annually. A total of $10,000 has been allocated by the Libraries for these grants.


Faculty, graduate students, staff, and postdocs are eligible to apply for the grant. Applicants are encouraged to disclose other sources of funding, such as department or grant funds, which may be applied to the total cost of the data.

Data Specifications

The grant is for single-user licenses and small-group licenses for a one-time purchase or one-year subscription. For campus-wide access, submit a purchase request. You can request any data related to teaching or research, including:

  • Quantitative or qualitative datasets
  • Text corpora, demo corpora, text collections, or linguistic corpora
  • Text with markup
  • Image files or PDF files of archival items, artworks, photographs, or maps
  • Geospatial data including raster and vector files


Data sets should be currently produced and should not require the library to purchase updates or additional products. Data sets should be from credible and reliable sources or vendors who have the rights to sell or lease access to the data. 


The data must be in a public-use version containing no personal identifiers. It must have undergone de-identification to remove sensitive information and will not include non-human sensitive data. Any independent data sets must include documentation that describes their internal format and meaning, and which can assist in the recovery of the data should changes to the University computing environment render it unreadable in the future. 

Submission Process

Submit your application below. Applications are reviewed by a team and awardees are selected twice per year. Once you have been approved, we will work with you and the vendor to acquire the data. The timeline for acquiring new data sets is often 6-8 weeks.


Please consult the list of available data sets prior to submitting your request.  

Application Form