Data without Boundaries
Official statistical systems are producing a wealth of data of increasingly high quality, about various aspects of European societies. DwB explores ways to improve researchers’ access to these resources, most of which are country specific and do not circulate easily across borders. Even though today’s national legal frameworks are often sympathetic towards the needs of researchers, and even though Eurostat and the ESS (the system of national statistical institutes of Europe) are taking steps to improve access to European-level datasets, trans-border access to country-level official microdata is still patchy and sometimes difficult, particularly penalizing comparative research.
This project, funded by the European Commission under its 7th Framework Programme, started in May 2011 and will last four years, involving 27 organisations -academic institutions, national statistical agencies, and data archives in different countries.
I am particularly involved in WorkPackage 3, which focuses on researcher accreditation standards -that is, answers to the questions of how to define a researcher, a research, a research project; what steps are necessary for researchers to apply for data access; how to manage and monitor the application and decision-making processes. We are mapping the solutions to these questions that countries have chosen, aiming to identify commonalities and shared understandings, despite apparent discrepancies; on this basis, we hope to define solutions that facilitate cross-border access in future.
As part of this task, I organised a one-day workshop on access to microdata and researcher accreditation in Eastern Europe, which took place at the University of Bucharest, Romania, in January 2012.
I am also involved in WorkPackage 6, in charge of involving a large number of stakeholders and of organising user conferences and training events. We had had a successful Europan Data Access Forum on Eurostat premises in Luxembourg in March 2011, and we are now preparing a regional workshop for Eastern Europe to be held in Ljubljana in spring 2013.
Publications and dissemination:
P. Tubaro, M. Cros, B. Kleiner, R. Silberman (2013). Accreditation for transnational research access to official micro-data in Europe. NTTS Conference, 5-7 March, Brussels [full paper].
P. Tubaro, Is the open data movement a threat or an opportunity for National Statistical Institutes? Invited panel, conference of the International Association for Official Statistics, 12-14 Sept. 2012, Kiev [slides].
P. Tubaro, M. Cros, B. Kleiner, R. Silberman, Access to official data and researcher accreditation: State of the art and future perspectives in Europe, presented at the 38th IASSIST Conference, 4-8 June 2012, Washington DC [slides].
P. Tubaro, M. Cros, and R. Silberman, Transnational access to official microdata and accreditation in Europe. State of the art and challenges ahead, presented at the 1st European Data Access Forum, Luxembourg, 27-28 March 2012 [slides] [audio].
P. Tubaro, R. Silberman, and M. Cros, Access to official microdata and accreditation of researchers in Europe, presented at the workshop “Access to Official Microdata & Accreditation of Researchers in Eastern European Countries”, University of Bucharest, 23 January 2012 [slides].
P. Tubaro and R. Silberman, Towards a European distributed remote access: main issues and future challenges. Paper presented at the 58th World Statistics Congress, Dublin, 21-26 August 2011 [slides].