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Research funding organizations understand the importance of infrastructure and services to organize and preserve research data. Academic research libraries have been identified as locations in which to base these research data management services. Research data management services include data management planning, digital curation (selection, preservation, maintenance, and archiving), and metadata creation and conversion. However, some libraries are beginning to provide structure for research data management services. These services are starting to record some degree of success as local data policies are being formulated. The aim of this paper, therefore, is to discuss the importance of research data management in the academic libraries in Nigeria. The article summarized the research data management life cycle to include: data creation; data collection and description, data storage; data archiving and preservation; data access; data discovery and analysis, and data reuse and transformation. The paper further identified research data management tools and applications, which include DMPonline, Data Asset framework, Collaborative Assessment of Research Data Infrastructure and Objectives (CARDIO), and Curation cost exchange. Specifically, the paper examines some skills requirements for research data management in academic libraries. Some of the challenges facing effective research data management services identified by this paper include technology obsolescence, technology fragility; Lack of guidelines on good practice; Inadequate financial and human resources to manage data well, and Lack of evidence about best infrastructures.