How does my institution become a member?
Download our Membership Agreement and return either a redline copy (if your internal process of evaluation leads you to wish to propose changes) or a signed copy (if no changes are needed) to Karen Woollams (woollams at umich.edu) and Jason Owen-Smith (jdos at umich.edu). We will route the agreement through our internal processes and an attorney from the University of Michigan will be in touch.
Who is the primary legal contact if I have questions about the agreement?
The primary legal contact is Patrick Woods, Office of Research & Sponsored Projects.
Address: 3003 S State Street 1034 WT
Ann Arbor MI 48109-1274
Email: pajwoods at umich.edu
You may also direct questions to Jason Owen-Smith, IRIS Executive Director.
Why do you need identified data?
We plan to use the identified data entirely for the purposes of linkage to other data sources. In particular we’ll be making links to patents, publications, and potentially (depending on agreements we’re negotiating) to things like Proquest dissertation data using computational name matching methods. These linkages allow us to conduct research and report much more fully on the process and products of research.
Why does IRIS ask for employee name and date of birth?
How long will you keep my restricted data?
The identifiable data are retained by IRIS until a campus determines that it does not want to continue participation at which point (as described in the Membership Agreement) they will be destroyed. The de-identified data that they were used to produce will not be, we will retain that for the purposes of replication. We anticipate returning to members with a request for renewal as the three year term of initial agreements comes to an end.
Are you IRB approved?
Who else will have access to my restricted data?
Under the terms of the IRIS Membership Agreement, access to restricted data from your institution is limited to approved IRIS Nodes and IRIS partners. Nodes are organizations under contract with IRIS to improve the data using the IRIS data system. Partners are organizations that are approved to receive whole or partial copies of restricted data for the purposes of improving them in their own data systems. Nodes and partners will both need to be approved by the IRIS governing board, which will be empaneled by the beginning of 2016. The only partner currently participating in IRIS is the U.S. Census Bureau.
What will happen to my data at the U.S. Census Bureau?
Does signing the Membership Agreement obligate me to submit every data field?
While the quality and completeness of the reports your campus will receive depend on the data you submit, you are not obligated to provide every data field we request. You may choose to participate in IRIS while only submitting some data. You may not receive all the reports we could generate for you, however, and the membership fee is unchanged. We are happy to provide as clear a picture of how exclusion of particular data fields might affect reports.
How will IRIS protect my data?
IRIS has a FISMA compliant security architecture that combines technical, physical, and institutional safeguards to insure the security of data submitted by our members. More details are available in the IRIS Data Management Plan.
What does my campus need to do to participate fully?
Does the inclusion of students in the research administration data trigger FERPA?
Ultimately, this is a question each campus must answer with its own Office of General Counsel. If your campus determines that information about student employees is protected under FERPA, the IRIS MOU includes provisions that can enable you to share these data under the FERPA study exception (34 C.F.R. 99.31(a)(6)). Please do not hesitate to contact us directly if you have any questions or would like us to arrange an attorney-to-attorney conversation with the Michigan Office of General Counsel.
We hope your campus will decide to include student information in the dataset so that IRIS can return complete data reports to you and to facilitate systematic study of the value of research and research investment using the de-identified secondary data IRIS produces in its role as an IRB approved data repository.
How much time does it usually take to pull together the data on our end?
We’re a private institution. What about FOIA?
- The information is used exclusively for research, testing, evaluation, and related activities;
- The information is designated as confidential by the external source before or at the time it is received;
- The University has entered into an authorized agreement to keep the information confidential; and
- A document containing a general description of the information to be received under the confidentiality agreement, the term of the agreement, the name of the external entity with whom the agreement was made, and a general description of the nature of the intended use for the information, is recorded by the University within 20 regular working days after it is received.
The University of Michigan’s General Counsel and FOIA Office have determined that your data submission meets the requirements for an exception to FOIA requests under CRIIA. Our Agreement specifies that all FOIA requests will be reviewed accordant to any applicable FOIA exceptions, including, to the extent the institution depositing data with IRIS is a private entity and the materials have been clearly designated as confidential, the Confidential Research and Investment Information Act (CRIIA).
Download Membership FAQ in PDF