The RAIRD Project
There is an increasing demand for access to micro data from researchers and for empirical research based on important registers from public government, see the International handbooks and guidelines that have been developed. (E.g UNECE 2007: Managing statistical Confidentiality & Micro-data Access). For official statistical data this user demand has to be met in a way that is in accordance with the principles of confidentiality for micro data that has been collected for official statistics. These principles of confidentiality are normally legal founded and are common for official statistics in most countries.
In Norwegian official statistics there is wide use of administrative data (e.g. from NAV). Statistics Norway also has close cooperation with administrative registers like the Population Registers and Central Coordinating Register for Legal Entities. The common identifiers (persons and economic units) give SSB the possibility to link information from different sources (administrative and own statistical surveys). Data with identifiers are stored and accumulated over time. This gives theoretically an enormous pool of data and is a rich data source for research. The data model was described by Prof. Svein Nordbotten in the 1960s. The data may be combined and presented as cross section data. Data may also be combined in ways that gives longitudinal data
The main justification for the RAIRD project is to increase dissemination capacity and facilitate better and more efficient access to publicly produced micro data for research purposes. RAIRD will make it possible for researchers to access and merge micro level data while still safeguarding data confidentiality. This will save time-consuming application procedures and significantly reduce the cost of access.