DNORS Survey Restricted Use Data

Restricted Data Types

DNORS has created four versions of Restricted Data, which are increasing the number of variables and their detail, as well as the level of data security that is required.

DNORS Restricted Data Version 1

DNORS Restricted Data Version 1 is the lowest level of restricted data. It includes all non-topcoded individual characteristics reported in the household interviews. It also includes variables describing distance between geographic locations (e.g., current residence and Katrina residence) and the county, state, and country were collected for locations. Users are thus able to estimate multilevel statistical models but cannot link additional community-level data. Access to these data requires a contract and a processing fee of $150.

DNORS Restricted Data Version 2

DNORS Restricted Data Version 2 is the middle level of restricted data that adds actual census tract number plus city names and zipcodes were collected for locations along with the more detailed occupation and industry codes. It includes the 2000 and 2010 census tract numbers that provide an easy link to the data from the decennial censuses and other sources. Note that tracts are only available when a street address could be geocoded. It includes all version 1 data as well. Access to these data requires a contract and a processing fee of $650.

DNORS Restricted Data Version 3

DNORS Restricted Data Version 3 is the mid-high level of restricted data that adds census block number to the individual records, which allows researchers to link neighborhood characteristics at a finer geographic level than census tract. It includes 2000 and 2010 census block codes. Like tracts, blocks are only available when a street address could be geocoded. It includes all Version 1 and Version 2 data as well. Access to these data requires a contract and a processing fee of $650. Also required are additional data protection steps over and above those required for Version 2.

DNORS Restricted Data Version 4

DNORS Restricted Data Version 4 is the highest level of restricted data that adds geographic coordinates to individual records. It includes the geographic coordinates (latitude and longitude) of addresses collected in the DNORS (e.g., Katrina address, current address, address of Child Module children, location of own children and parents). If only a city location was reported, the coordinates are for the city centroid. A zip centroid was used if a zip was provided and the street address could not be geocoded. It also includes the day of birth and day of death for those pre-Katrina household members who subsequently passed away. It includes version 1, 2, and 3 data as well. Access to these data requires the use of a secure data enclave, a contract, and a processing fee of $650.

Application Process

Only researchers who are permanently employed by an organization with a current Federal Wide Assurance (FWA) Certificate may apply to use the Restricted Data. Additionally, for Version 4 Restricted Data, researchers must be the Principal investigator of a federally-funded research project or a researcher working in a federally-funded research center.

The application process for DNORS Restricted Data covers just the DNORS and not the DNORPS. The process for all applications is the same, regardless of version, and involves the following steps:

  1. The applicant submits a preliminary application to dnorsapplications@rand.org.
  2. When DNORS approves the data safeguarding plan and other parts of the preliminary application, the applicant then submits the application package to his/her home IRB for a full-committee review.
  3. When the home institution IRB reviews and approves the RAND-approved data safeguarding, the Data User Agreement is then signed and submitted to RAND as part of the final application where it is counter-signed. The Restricted Data are then provided to the applicant.

IRB Review Requirements

DNORS and RAND require that applicants submit their application, including the RAND-reviewed and approved data safeguarding plan, to their home institution for a full-committee review regardless of version requested. An expedited or exempt IRB review is not acceptable.

The only exception is if the researcher's IRB has previously reviewed and approved the exact same data safeguarding plan in the past. For example, if a new application proposes to use a secure enclave that has already been reviewed and approved, a full review is not required and an expedited review will suffice. In this case, however, the applicant must cite in his or her application the specific application title and the Restricted Data Investigator that provide the precedent on which the request for an expedited IRB review is based.

All applicants are required to have their IRB form complete. IRB form (PDF)

DNORS Restricted Data Users Annual Report

An Annual Report is due on the anniversary of your restricted data user agreement. It is submitted electronically to dnorsapplications@rand.org and must include the following items:

  1. An updated Research Plan and Data Protection Plan, if there have been changes to either of these plans, or a note stating that there have been no changes;
  2. The most recent annual approval notice from your Institutional Review Board;
  3. An updated list of all project team members that shows individuals who have joined the project as well as those who have left;
  4. A list and electronic copies of all publications and documents using the restricted data including slides or posters from presentations, working papers, dissertations, theses, manuscripts, reports, book chapters, and published or forthcoming journal articles prepared since the beginning of the project or since the previous submission of these materials; and
  5. For Version 4 Restricted Data Only: An update of the status and details of federal funding to ensure that federal funding is in place for the entire period covered by the agreement.

Continuing or Ending Your Restricted Use Agreement

Researchers and project team members may use the data only for the time period specified on the Restricted Use Data Agreement, or, if no dates are specified, for three years from the effective date of the contract.

Restricted Data Users may extend or renew their agreements to use the data.

Extensions: Restricted Data Users who are up to date with their Annual Reports may request an extension on their use of the data for up to one year.

To request an extension, please submit the following items:

  • A written request for continued use of the Restricted Data, including the reasons for the request (maximum length of one page);
  • A completed and signed Extension Request Form (PDF), and
  • A check for $100 to cover administrative costs.

Renewals: Restricted Data Users who would like to continue using the data for more than one year beyond their original contract and are up to date with their Annual Reports may request a contract renewal. A single contract renewal can be requested for a period of up to three years.

To request a renewal, please submit the following items:

  • A written request for continued use of the Restricted Data, including the reasons for the request (maximum length of one page);
  • A revised Data Protection Plan (or written assurance that the plan has not changed);
  • A completed and signed Renewal Request Form (PDF), and
  • A check for $250 to cover administrative costs.

Only a single extension can be requested. Continued use of the DNORS Restricted Data would require the submission of a new application.

End of Contract: At the end of the Agreement, Restricted Data Users must return the data to the RAND Corporation, along with an End of Contract (PDF) form.

Changes to Your Restricted Data Use Agreement

If your agreement ends, you must return the data to RAND along with the End of Contract form.

If your project is extended, you may apply for an extension by submitting a Contract Extension form.

If you change institutions, you must reapply to use the Restricted Data. A new contract must be established between RAND and your new institution. You will need to return the data to RAND, along with an End of Contract form, and we will hold the data for you until the Restricted Data Use Agreement with your new institution is complete.

If your research staff changes, we must be notified. If a new research team member has come on board, you need too fill out and submit a Supplemental Agreement with Research Staff form for this person before they are able to access the data. If someone should leave the team, this should be noted in your Annual Report.

If your Data Protection Plan changes, you need to submit a revised plan to RAND. Additionally, your IRB should be notified of changes and approve your revised plan.