RDS Service Charter

RDS’s mission is to improve the economic, social and environmental wellbeing in Scotland by enabling access to and linkage of data about people, places and businesses for research in the public good.

We are committed to providing a high quality, responsible and accessible service for all of our stakeholders. This Customer Charter statement summarises the key areas of our commitment to high quality service.

RDS principles

  1. RDS will only enable access to data for research that is for the public good
  2. RDS will ensure that researchers and RDS staff can only access data once an individual’s personal identity has been removed
  3. RDS will ensure that all data about people, businesses or places is always kept in a controlled and secured environment
  4. RDS will only create a dataset if it is requested for a research programme or study that is in the public good
  5. All income that RDS generates will be re-invested into services to help researchers continue to access data
  6. Firms that access public data for the public good through RDS will share any commercial benefits back into public services
  7. RDS will be transparent about what data it provides access to and how it is being used for public benefit

Contacting RDS

RDS can be contacted at info@researchdata.scot or on 0131 651 3100. All enquiries will receive a prompt and courteous response. General enquiries received by email will be acknowledged immediately and responded to within 3 working days.

RDS can also be contacted on Twitter at @RDS_Scotland. Any direct messages received will be responded to within 3 working days.

Data Access Requests

Requests for data access will be acknowledged immediately and will be answered by our Researcher Support and Coordination Service within 3 working days. Where further information is required to satisfy a data access request, the response will set out the steps it will take to progress the request.

Data access requests can involve many complex aspects including identifying suitable datasets and their data controllers, understanding the legal basis on which the data can be made available, establishing how diverse datasets can be linked, obtaining approval for a project to proceed, and accessing the data output in a secure location. At each stage RDS will assist a researcher to understand these issues and will advise on timescales throughout the life of their project.

You can help us in the following ways:

  • Giving us all the information we need to help you
  • Telling us how we can improve our service using the enquiry form on our website or by email to info@researchdata.scot
  • Asking us to explain anything you are unsure about
  • Telling us if material/guidance on our website are useful and/or easy to understand? We appreciate all feedback

Find out more about Research Data Scotland