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Data Access: On-site Use

The use of weakly anonymous data is subject to restrictions concerning data protection legislation. Due to these regulations the data can be analyzed only via on-site use. For this purpose, the FDZ provides separate workplaces for guest Researchers at different locations.

The FDZ offers advisory service by its staff only at the location in Nuremberg.

How to obtain data access to the FDZ data via On-site Use?

How to modify an existing FDZ agreement?  

Data use for students

Specifics on the data access at FDZ locations in USA, Canada and UK


External data

 How to obtain data access to the FDZ data via On-site Use?

  1. Make an application
    To apply for a visit as guest researcher please fill in the request form for on-site use. After completing the form, please send your request as a Word document by e-mail to the FDZ ( Please note that requests which are not submitted as Word documents will not be processed. An information sheet is available to help you fill in the request form. The request documents submitted are verified for compliance with the provisions of Section 282 (7) of Book III of the German Social Code by the FDZ. This could take up to one month. We offer the possibility to submit applications in German and English (Except applications for on-site use in the UK, USA and Canada. These must be in English). Please note, the contract will be in the same language as the application. Therefore, please clarify if necessary with your institution whether it will sign an agreement in German/English before submitting your application.

    Request form for on-site use

  2.  Use Agreement
    After the request has been approved, a use agreement is concluded between the researcher’s Institution and the FDZ. This agreement entitles the researcher to analyze the required data via on-site use.

    As the legal requirement of written form applies to our agreements, they may only be signed with a handwritten or certified electronic signature. The certified electronic signature must have a trustworthy certificate (certified by a certification authority (CA)) which will be shown when clicking on it. A self-created certificate, a signature drawn with a computer mouse or inserted as an image file, as well as a scan of the signed agreement are not permitted for our agreements.

    On the website of the German Federal Network Agency (only in German) you can find a list of providers of the certified electronic signature in Germany. A list of providers in the European Union (EU) can be found on the website of the EU Commission.

  3. Appointments
    After the conclusion of the agreement, the researcher can make an appointment for the research visit with the corresponding location. The date for the visit should normally be notified at least two weeks before the intended visit. These appointments are binding. If appointments can’t be met, please inform the corresponding location as soon as possible.
  4. Preparation for the On-site Use
    On-site use of data at the FDZ is subject to adherence to the following guidelines. Please read this documents previous to your visit.

    Guidelines for On-Site Use and Remote Date Access  
    Data Protection Manual

    We suggest that the user prepares programs ahead of his research visit on the basis of our test data and documentations, thus providing for efficient use of the visit. Please upload your programs in time (no later than 3 business days before the visit) with the software JoSuA (Job Submission Application).
  5. After the On-site Use
    Results are verified for compliance with the given data protection legislation and available in JoSuA after the research visit.
    Researchers may run further analyses for their project via remote data access after their research stays. 
  6. Publishing the results
    Researchers’ publications based on FDZ data must include a reference to the datasets used (name of the datasets and mode of the data access). Please submit one copy of every publication (including so-called ‘grey literature’) in digital or printed form to the FDZ.

How to modify an existing FDZ agreement?

Amendments concerning project end, data requirement or inclusion of further members of staff can be incorporated via a supplementary data use agreement:

Request form amendments

Changes of the institution conducting the research or in the contents of the project require a new request for data use. Please always indicate the project number as well.

Data use for students

Students may also use social data via on-site use at the FDZ in the context of their theses or dissertations. In this case the faculty responsible for the student is to submit the request for data use.

Specifics on the data access at FDZ locations in USA, Canada and UK

In case you intend to analyse our data via on-site use at one of our locations in USA, Canada or UK please contact the FDZ at an early stage to agree upon the general conditions. Please note that the data have to undergo additional anonymization procedures if they are to be used in USA, Canada or UK, due to data protection regulations.

Alternating between locations in Germany / France and USA / Canada / UK in the course of the project is not possible without additional anonymization measures. During research visits in USA, Canada or UK of less than 9 months in the course of the project it is not possible to access the data via on-site use at one of our locations in USA, Canada and UK because the additional anonymization would cause disproportionate effort. In these cases it is still possible to analyse the data in USA, Canada or UK by using our online application JoSuA.

Once the data of a project have been further anonymized, it is not possible to switch back to the original version after switching to on-site locations in Germany or France.


Information on confidentiality

External data

Further information on external data can be found here.

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