Restricted Data

Restricted data collections

The Bodleian Data Library manages access to restricted data collections which, due to confidentiality or licensing conditions, cannot be subscribed to in the normal manner or accessed across the University of Oxford IT network. Assistance is also given in completing formal applications to access data and to offer secure storage space in certain circumstances. In cases where a University ‘Institutional Signature’ is required as part of the application process this is supplied by the Bodleian Data Librarian.

Examples of data which are held or where assistance has been given in successfully making an application include:

Eurostat and UKDS Secure Lab

Support and advice is also provided on how to apply for access to restricted data - especially micro data supplied by Eurostat and the Secure Data Lab of the UK Data Service. This requires successful completion of a detailed application process before access is granted and includes:


  • Adult Education Survey
  • Community Innovation Survey
  • Community Statistics on Information Society
  • EU Labour Force Survey
  • EU Statistics on Income and Living
  • European Community Household Panel
  • European Health Interview Survey
  • Micro-Moments Dataset
  • Structure of Earnings Survey
  • and more

UK Data Service Secure Lab

  • Annual Inquiry into Foreign Direct investment
  • Annual Respondents Survey
  • Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings
  • Business Structure Database
  • Labour Force Survey
  • Longitudinal Study of Young People in England
  • UK Innovation Survey
  • and more

Information on the overall procedures for applying to access this data are here:


Investment by the ESRC in Big Data has funded the Administrative Data Research Network (ADRN). The Bodleian Data Library has applied for two ESRC-funded SafePods (to be located in the Social Science Library) from which researchers can analyse sensitive and linked administrative datasets via the ADRN. However there is no definite timetable for the establishment of this service. Currently provision for restricted access is made within the Economics department.

For enquiries or further information on how we may assist please email

GESIS: MISSY (Microdata Information System)

Part of the service infrastructure of the German Microdata Lab, MISSY is an online service platform that provides structured metadata for official statistics, containing metadata at the study and variable level, as well as reports and tools for data handling and analysis. This especially applies for the output-harmonised European surveys, such as EU-SILC or EU-LFS, which are conducted under varying circumstances in the different countries of the European Union. As this data is not primarily collected for scientific purposes, the documentation does not conform to established social science standards. MISSY closes this gap in documentation by providing a central source of structured documentation. This reduces the individual effort in data exploration and preparation as metadata, tool and links to the original documentation materials are accessible.

MISSY supports researches on different levels throughout the research process in all phases of their project:

Finding data - answering the questions whether a series documented in MISSY is suitable to answer a certain research question;
Getting data - gathering information regarding regulations, restrictions and contact information to apply for data access;
Preparing data - providing syntax-files to import the data into statistical software;
Understanding data - providing information about question wording, comparability over time, comparability over space, etc.

For EU-LFS microdata users MISSY offers SPSS- and STATA routines, which transfer the EU-LFS 1999-2016 ad hoc csv-files to SPSS/Stata data files. Latest update are available here.


The International Data Access network (IDAN) is a collaboration between six research data centres (RDCs) that allows trans-national use of restricted data, whilst maintaining the same level of controlled access demanded by depositors. It enables researchers to work remotely on data provided by partner countries but from within their own local Research Data Centre in either France, Germany, Netherlands and the UK. The partners in the project are: Le centre d’accès sécurisé aux données (CASD), France, Institute for Employment Research (IAB) and Gesis Data Archive, Germany, Statistics Netherlands (CBS), Netherlands, UK Data Service (UKDS) and the Office of National Statistics (ONS), UK.
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