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Application process

If you have a research idea that requires administrative data, the ADRN may be able to help. The research application process has four steps.

It is a long and intensive process, because researchers will be working with potentially sensitive data − so there are important safeguards in place to protect people’s privacy.

If you experience issues with the application form, please contact our Helpdesk via


Step 2: Approvals Panel

Considering the project

The Approvals Panel is made up of independent experts and lay members. They will check the project proposal against a number of criteria, and decide whether or not the project will progress. They can decide to accept the project, ask for more information and postpone the decision, or reject your proposal. The Approvals Panel meets once every month.

Researchers who apply to the Network have to submit a project proposal which is evaluated by the Approvals Panel against four criteria:

  • Feasibility
  • Academic merit
  • Public benefit
  • Privacy impact

They also check whether appropriate ethical review has been undertaken.

Read the Panel's Operating Procedures for more details.

More about the Panel

Panel decision

As soon as the Approvals Panel has made its decision, ADRN staff will inform the researcher whether the project can progress, or if it has been put on hold or rejected. If the project is put on hold and the Panel wants more information, they will help the researcher to develop their application further until the Panel decides either to fully accept or reject the project. If the project is rejected, ADRN staff will provide the necessary information about the appeals procedure.

SURE Training

If the project is accepted, all researchers involved in the project will need to complete SURE Training. This will start as close to the project’s start date as possible.

Page last updated: 22/06/2017