Computing Support

Applying for Restricted Data

Applying for Restricted-Use Data

The application must include the following:

  • Application for Restricted Data This includes information about the research project, the principal investigators, and the need for the restricted data.

  • Data Protection Plan The fundamental goal of this plan is to prevent unauthorized persons from gaining access to the data.

  • Restricted Data Use Agreement This is a contractual agreement between ICPSR and the principal investigators and their organizations specifying the terms of the use of the data.

  • Supplemental Agreement with Research Staff This is signed by every person other than the principal investigators who will have access to the data. New staff added in the course of a project must sign this form before they can gain access to restricted data.

  • Researcher CVs Required for all researchers who will be working on the project.

For your convenience, we have prepared a PDF file of all the application materials listed on this page.

Who Is Eligible?


Researchers can gain access to restricted-use data by demonstrating that they require the data for legitimate research purposes and by signing and adhering to the Restricted Data Use Agreement.

Furthermore, access to the restricted use dataset is limited to researchers employed by an organization possessing a current NIH Multiple Project Assurances (MPA) Certification Number (typically research-oriented universities). Access for individuals employed by organizations that do not have an MPA Certification Number may be obtained, however, upon the submission, review, and approval of the Application's Item #10 as well as the documents described in above.


Students may gain access to the restricted data under the supervision of a faculty advisor who will serve as Restricted Data Investigator. The faculty advisor and institution will ensure that the student meets all conditions of the agreement. The student must sign the Supplemental Agreement With Research Staff.

Multiple Institutions

A separate Restricted Data Use Agreement must be completed for each institution whose employees are involved in the research. This includes outside firms that are retained for services such as programming. Self-employed individuals with no institutional affiliation cannot gain access to restricted data.

The Restricted Data Use Agreements for all institutions involved in a project must be submitted to ICPSR together in a single package. This package should identify a single principal investigator who will serve as primary contact for the entire research team.


ICPSR will have full discretion in deciding whether the applicant meets eligibility criteria and whether the Data Protection Plan is adequate. ICPSR may request additional information from applicants or request changes to the Data Protection Plan. If ICPSR decides all requirements are met, a representative of ICPSR will sign the Restricted Data Use Agreement and return a copy of the fully executed agreement to the applicant along with instructions for obtaining a copy of the data.

Submit Applications to:

ICPSR Restricted Data Use Agreements P.O. Box 1248 Ann Arbor, MI 48106-1248

Questions about this application for the use of restricted-use data may also be sent to the above address or forwarded via fax (734) 647-8200 or e-mail (

Content is directly from ICPSR website: