Warwick's SafePod will provide a local safe setting for researchers to access sensitive datasets.
The SafePod Network (SPN) provides a major advance to the way that sensitive datasets can be securely accessed for research purposes across the UK.
The SPN is the first service in the world to provide and manage a network of standardised safe settings (SafePods). All SafePods operate under the same policies and procedures and provide accredited researchers with access to project datasets from participating data centres.
The SPN is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council and is run by the Scottish Centre for Administrative Data Research as part of the ADR UK programme.
What is a SafePod?
A SafePod is a small standardised safe setting that provides the physical security and controls for an accredited researcher to access sensitive datasets. This includes a door control access system, CCTV, a researcher area for the analysis of datasets and a separate secure storage area for IT equipment. A SafePod is also wheelchair accessible and includes a height adjustable desk.
The major advantage of using a SafePod is that a researcher can securely access different data centre datasets from a single location, removing the need for long distance travel to a dedicated safe setting provided by a data centre.
The University of Warwick SafePod will be one of a network of a total of 25 SafePods, spread geographically across the UK.
A wealth of government datasets, as well as study and survey datasets are available for secure access from a SafePod. This includes datasets from:
- Office for National Statistics Secure Research Service
- UK Data Service
- SAIL Databank
- linked datasets created by Administrative Data Research UK projects
Other data centres are expected to join the SPN to provide access to their datasets once the service is established.
Once launched the University of Warwick's SafePod can be booked through the SPN website. Where needed, priority of access will be given for research that is critical to society and the economy.
To access a dataset within a SafePod, researchers must have met the requirements and been granted permission by the data centre that holds the data. The process of applying for and obtaining approval to use a dataset can take time. We therefore recommend that you start the application process to request access to the data as soon as possible. See details on requirements and timeframes for making a booking.
Access to our SafePod will be coordinated by trained University of Warwick staff. Bookings must be received by the Coordinators a minimum of two working days before the date the SafePod is required.
SafePod location and opening hours
The University of Warwick's SafePod is located in the Second Floor Extension. It is available 10am-4pm Monday to Friday, excluding public holidays and University closure days.
For more information about the forthcoming University of Warwick SafePod, please contact researchdata at warwick dot ac dot uk
General information about the SafePod Network is available through their website
SafePod is a registered trademark of the University of St Andrews.
Accredited researchers may access datasets as part of an approved project agreed with a participating data centre. Links to researcher accreditation processes are provided below, where known. Please contact the relevant data centre directly for more information and to request access to a specific dataset.
Researchers can make SafePod bookings via the SafePod Network
Researchers will remotely access datasets via the SPN’s secure VPN connection to a data centre’s web portal. Researchers must then enter their project credentials to gain access to their datasets. Statistical disclosure control procedures will be agreed between the researcher and the data centre.