UCD Geary DataLab

The DataLab provides a facility to analyse confidential data in a secure environment. For example, certain datasets from CSO or Eurostat are required to be kept securely while being analysed for research purposes. The DataLab provides an office with two computers in Geary that have been locked down to satisfy the criteria of data owners. The computers can be booked to allow researcher to work and analyse their data.

How to get data
The Irish Social Science Data Archive (ISSDA) is Ireland’s leading centre for quantitative data acquisition, preservation, and dissemination. All data disseminated by ISSDA have undergone rigorous checks to ensure that they have been fully anonymised (“Anonymised Microdata Files” – AMFs), thus protecting individual data confidentiality. Key datasets include Growing up in Ireland, Survey of Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC), Household Budget Survey, the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing, etc. A full list is available from ISSDA data list. To apply for datasets from ISSDA simply complete the application form available from the ISSDA website. For more details please email ISSDA.

If you require access to more detailed or confidential data you will need to apply for a “Research Microdata File” (RMF) directly to the statistical agency that owns and controls the data (e.g. CSO). The application procedure can be quite lengthy and the data supplied can only be accessed in a secure environment such as that offered by the UCD Geary DataLab. Some of the details required for the application procedure are listed below. If you have further questions or require clarification email GearyTech.

The Setup

  • The Geary DataLab is situated in a secure office behind a swipe card access system in Geary
  • The room is always locked while not in use and is only used for DataLab activities/Officers of Statistics
  • There are two computers in the room and the following setup is for both machines
    • The computers are standalone with no access to the network in UCD or the internet
    • The USB ports have been disabled on the machine to prevent the use of USB keys for removal of data
    • There is a printer in the room which can be connected to the computers to print out results
    • They are full disk encrypted with AES 256 bit encryption secured with a strong password
    • The Users/officers of statistics named on the application will each be given an account on the machine and a strong password.
    • The data will be stored in a folder in the respective accounts of the users/officer of statistics named on the application and will not be accessible by other users of the computer.
    • The computer has the following software installed (please contact us if you require software not on this list)
      • Office 2010
      • Stata 12
      • SPSS v15

Strong passwords are enforced, with a minimum 8 characters with letters, numbers and punctuation.