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Australian Data Archive

Conditions of access to data from ADA

The Australian Data Archive is committed to providing open access to Australian and international research data for research and education purposes. This open access commitment however is balanced against our obligations to the original participants in these research studies. Data provided to the Australian Data Archive has been collected from research participants following research ethics requirements on the depositor who produced the data. These requirement place obligations on the researchers and ADA for appropriate use of the data for secondary purposes.

Access Categories

Data from the Australian Data Archive is made available under three broad categories of access. The choice of access category is made by the depositor of the data:

  • GENERAL ACCESS: studies with no restrictions placed on data access
  • RESTRICTED ACCESS: studies where the depositor, or an authorised representative, wishes to be informed by the Archive of each request to use the data in order to give or withhold permission.
  • SPECIAL ACCESS: studies where the depositor has included additional special access conditions. For example, the user may be required to obtain the permission in writing of the original depositor of the data, or an authorised representative, before publishing any interpretation of such materials.

Access to data at each of these levels has an associated user undertaking that you must complete in order to be granted access.

Access Levels

The Archive then provides access to data in the Australian Data Archive at three levels, depending on the access category of the study:

  • BROWSE: view metadata and summary statistics for data files
  • ANALYSE: use the ADA Nesstar analysis system to run cross-tabulations, correlations and linear regressions
  • DOWNLOAD: export the raw data files to your own computer

Your access to data at any point is then a combination of the access category of the study and the level of access to the data that you are seeking. Each of these access levels incorporates additional expectations on you regarding secure and appropriate use of the data. These can be summarised as follows:


  Access category
Access Level General Restricted Special
Browse Open Open Open
Analyse Open to Registered users Application required (Depositor approval) Study-specific
Download Application required (ADA approval) Application required (Depositor approval) Study-specific


The process for accessing ADA data then depends upon the level of access (browse, analyse or download) that you require. Browsing access is available for any study, while access to analyse data under a general access license is open to registered ADA users - click on the "Register" button at the top right of this page to create your account and log in to the ADA website.

Applying for access to data

To apply for access to general or restricted access datasets, you need to complete a Data Access Request.

If you know the name or ADA ID number of the study you are interested in, you can make a direct request through your "My Account" tab - you must be logged in in order to make a request. Alternatively, you can follow the Analyse/Download links from an ADA study, which will provide an automated request form for you to complete if you have not been previously approved.

Costs of Access

As of October 2015, there is no charge to access data from the Australian Data Archive.

Funding Partners

Collaboration Partners

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