Cardio is an assessment tool that can be used to characterize the level of handling research data.

The model is divided into three main aspects – known as the three legged stool. These are; organization, technology and resources. This way of thinking can be used to divide the questions about RDM into categories, and can be used to control a discussion. Each of the three legs is divided into multiple questions, each covering a certain part of that leg of the stool.

For each question of the 30 there is a scale of maturity levels that can be used to characterize the organisations level.

Politics: Identifies a number of focal points where politics could or should be applied.

Infrastructure: Helps identifying the needed infrastructures, by clarifying the needs through the assessment of current data handling. However, it does not identify infrastructure that is needed for new research projects, unless you perform the assessment as part of the planning phase.

Compentence: Especially the leg resources covers the focus areas in which the organisation can need further competences.