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How to access : Apply for a project


How to apply for access to a project in the Integrated Data Service (IDS).

Submit an Expression of Interest

Accredited researchers can apply to access data in the Integrated Data Service (IDS) by emailing (opens in a new tab) 

Our Engagement team will contact you within three working days to capture requirements around:

  • outputs
  • data
  • data refreshes
  • linkage

We may arrange a follow-up conversation.

Once a formal Expression of Interest has been submitted, you will receive a decision within two to three weeks, depending on any revisions or amendments that may be requested.

Apply for project accreditation

If the capabilities of the Integrated Data Service (IDS) platform align with your project, we may ask you to submit a formal project accreditation application through the Research Accreditation Service (RAS) (opens in a new tab) 

Projects are accredited using Section C of the Research Code of Practice and Accreditation Criteria (opens in a new tab) , approved by the UK Parliament in July 2018.

As part of your application, we may ask you about:

  • the purpose, aims and duration of the project
  • the personal data involved and how it will be used
  • methods and software used
  • ethical standards
  • who will be involved, including team members and sponsor
  • how the project will impact and benefit the UK public
  • how results of the research will be made openly and accessibly available

You will also be asked to choose a project lead and deputy project lead. Their responsibilities include:

  • overseeing and monitoring the project once set up on IDS
  • requesting changes to team members, including any movers or leavers
  • requesting changes to the project, such as project purpose, datasets and project timescales
  • responding to audit requests from the Security Compliance and Audit (SCA) team and any other IDS audit teams
  • ensuring team members are aware of access conditions
  • if planning to leave the project, submitting a change request through RAS to nominate their replacement

The deputy project lead supports the project lead and provides cover if they are unable to fulfil their role.

We will review project application submissions and may ask for additional information or amendments. We will be checking for and, where necessary, getting the relevant data owner approvals.

We will submit your application to the UK Statistics Authority (UKSA) and the Research Accreditation Panel (RAP) and inform you of their accreditation decisions.

Timeline of application

The timeline for these processes may vary depending on many factors, such as the:

  • nature and complexity of your proposal
  • data requirements and if the data are already held within IDS
  • ethical considerations
  • analysts obtaining their accredited researcher status

Currently, we estimate that:

  • the Integrated Data Service (IDS) internal review and data owner approval process of the formal project accreditation application may take two to ten weeks
  • the UKSA accreditation decision stage takes two to nine working days; the UKSA or the RAP may raise queries and responding to them adds to this turnaround time

Work is underway to ensure the application process is as simple as possible, while maintaining our commitment to rigorous security and ethical checks.

Email the IDS Customer Support team for more information at (opens in a new tab)