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Building a cross border data access system for improved scholarship and policy: the case of the German IAB network of RDCs

Presenter 1
Joerg Heining
Institute for Employment Research (IAB)
Presenter 2
Warren Brown
Cornell University
Presenter 3
Bill Block
Cornell University
Presenter 4
Stefan Bender
Institute for Employment Research (IAB)

The Research Data Centre (FDZ) of the German Federal Employment Agency (BA) at the Institute for Employment Research (IAB) provides data on individuals, households and establishments, as well as data that comprise both establishment and personal information. The FDZ data originate from three different sources. From the notification process of the social security system and the internal procedures of the Federal Employment Agency process-generated data are obtained. Furthermore, the IAB acquires data by conducting own surveys. 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 in Nuremberg and further locations in Germany and in the USA. As this network of research data centers is built out it is with the expectation that improved access to restricted data managed with a high degree of data security will yield benefits to policy makers as well as to scholars. The benefits and the means for documenting these benefits is a central focus of the paper.

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