DwB

FACILITATING TRANSNATIONAL ACCES TO CONFIDENTIAL DATA

Researchers face numerous obstacles when wanting to work on detailed (confidential) data from a country in which they do not reside. Authorisation procedures and access modalities vary. Only a small number of countries authorize access from another country. With 29 partners in 14 European countries, involving national statistical institutes and social science databanks, the Data without Boundaries (2011-2015) FP7 project set the first stones for cooperation to ease transnational access to confidential data for research purposes.

A PROOF OF CONCEPT FOR A SECURE DISTRIBUTED NETWORK

CASD, partner in the project alongside INSEE, built alongside DESTATIS (the German federal statistics institute) and GESIS a proof of concept for a secure distributed network, to help authorized users work from a one stop shop on transnational data in various secure centers. The Proof of Concept presented at the 2nd European Data Access Forum organized by DwB with Eurostat’s support shows the possibility of setting up an integrated highly secure infrastructure, flexible enough to take into account various national legislations and the resulting constraints. At the least, it enables the use of the same equipment, same procedures, and the same access point by all. Such a network, will potentially help a research team, spread across many countries, to work together on multiple sources and combine analysis time.

CIMES, METADATA FOR NATIONAL DATA IN EUROPE

DwB partners have also worked concretely on solutions to immediately improve the information and documentation on national data in Europe. In particular, the CASD built the CIMES tool, Centralising and Integrating Metadata from European Statistics, a catalog of basic metadata, in English and in the international DDI format, on the data available in the various countries, the different types of files (public, de facto anonymized, confidential) with their procedures and links to data producers.

TOWARDS A STEP BY STEP CONSTRUCTION

CASD continues to build, step by step, with partners and as close to researchers’ projects and needs as possible, creating bi-lateral and multilateral co-operations to concretely advance the construction of this infrastructure for research.