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We expect to run as normal a service as possible during this COVID-19 (Coronavirus) emergency. Visit our COVID-19 page for the latest information.

The UK's largest digital collection of social sciences and population research data

Trusted Digital Repository

The UK Data Archive is a Trusted Digital Repository with a mission to provide reliable, long-term access to managed digital resources. We are at the forefront of defining, meeting and supporting the adoption of appropriate and universal standards.

Trust is critical to supporting our mission: to support high quality social and economic research, teaching and learning through ensuring long-term access to quality economic and social data, supporting and promoting their use, value and impact. 

Framework of trust

Any organisation that provides access to data over a long period of time should publish a statement describing the practices they follow and the provenance of data they provide. This makes sure we can tell the extent to which data may have been altered during processing. Researchers need to be certain that data published by other producers on one day are the same as the data published the day before. Data owners and data subjects trust the Archive to:

  • look after information appropriately, providing access to authorised users
  • undertake ingest processing, including making sure data are appropriately anonymised and internally consistent
  • manage their data using robust information security protocols and processes
  • monitor hardware and software developments and migrate data collections accordingly
  • uplift our business and workflows to accommodate big and linked data to meet the needs of today's researchers

We use the Open Archival Information System (OAIS) for organisational structure and systems for archives with responsibility for preserving information and make it available to a Designated Community.