The agreements will see RDS continue to work with the Scottish Centre for Administrative Data Research (SCADR) and SAIL Databank to improve access to public sector data and enable researchers to more easily generate insights for the public benefit in Scotland.
SCADR is a research centre that analyses data from across the public sector, exploring what linking it in new ways can reveal. It is comprised of researchers from a range of leading institutions across Scotland including Edinburgh Napier University, University of Edinburgh, University of Glasgow, University of Strathclyde and University of St Andrews.
The agreement between RDS and SCADR will see both organisations continue to work collaboratively to achieve shared aims, including joint working on the ADR Scotland programme, investigating funding opportunities for collaborative development projects, and sharing insights on developments in the data landscape. The new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) builds on the existing RDS/SCADR Public Engagement and Involvement MoU, which sees the two organisations develop and maintain the ‘Scotland Talks Data’ public panel, empowering members of the public to have a voice on the use of administrative data for research.
SAIL Databank is a world-renowned Trusted Research Environment (TRE) – a highly secure computing environment which brings together a variety of information about the UK population and makes this data available for research to improve public services and increase health and wellbeing. Based within Population Data Science at Swansea University, SAIL is partially funded by Health and Care Research Wales, a networked organisation supported by Welsh Government.
Building on an existing partnership, the MoU will see RDS and SAIL highlight the insights being generated through public sector data research in the devolved nations and advocate for future developments and improvements to data access. The collaboration will involve sharing knowledge to advance both organisations’ shared goals and investigating options for collaborative working and securing joint funding.
The MoUs form part of a wider formalisation of collaborations between RDS and partner organisations, including an agreement with ADR Scotland through which RDS will help deliver core elements of the ADR Scotland programme, and service-level agreements with eDRIS (part of Public Health Scotland) and the Scottish Government.
Layla Robinson, Chief Partnership and Strategy Officer at RDS, said: