This talk will highlight current developments regarding transnational access to confidential microdata. Examples are access from North America to German labour market data and a proposal for a European Remote Access Network (Eu-RAN) that will bring researchers and research data within the European Research Area closer to each other. A new legal construct called European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) opens such solutions also for partners outside of Europe. Having better solutions for transnational access is an important step forward. At the same time none of such solutions will be successful without information about the available data. Especially when working with data from another country or even more acute when carrying out comparative research with data from multiple countries, good data documentation is needed. According to that modern transnational data access solutions will only be successful, if circumstances of access, accreditation as well as quality and content of data are documented. Such documentation needs to be easy to understand for the users and easy to implement into software tools. Only if data access and data documentation developments go hand in hand both development lines will be successful and lift transnational research on a higher level.
David Schiller (IAB), Ingo Barkow (DIPF)
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