Application for a user licence and changes to licences

A licence to use data must be applied for micro data. If the data are extended, users are added or a continuation is needed or if the place of use of the data changes from Finland to abroad, a change must be applied for the user licence.

The licence to use the data is subject to a charge. The applicant is also charged for the costs of the data or formation of the data. Remote access use is also subject to a charge.

Who can apply for a user licence?

The applicant for licence to use statistical data is an organisation and a named person, for example, the researcher responsible for the research. Applications may also be filed by an individual researcher. Data collected by Statistics Finland for statistical purposes may be released for purposes of scientific research and statistical surveys.

If a user licence is applied for alone, the user must have access to remote access through some organisation if the data are used in remote access use. A user licence can also be applied for a thesis, but the licence is subject to a charge.

Application for a user licence and processing of the application

1. Explore the data selection of the Research Services.

2. Fill in the in the application in Statistics Finland 's licensing service.

Fill in the application with care so that your application can be processed without complementing it.

The application for licence must contain the following information:

  • Licene applicant's details. The applicant and controller of a user licence can be a public authority, an institute or an individual researcher. Even in cases where the applicant is a public authority or an institution, the licence is granted to a specific person or to specific persons.
  • Users of data. All persons involved in the handling of the data must be mentioned in the user licence.
  • Intended use of the data. The licence applicant must specify in sufficient detail the purpose for which the data will be used.
  • Estimated duration of use of the data file

Appendices required for the application:

  • Summary of the research plan or the plan of a statistical survey in case of a data application, not compulsory in other applications
  • Pledges of secrecy if not previously submitted. You can submit pledge of secrecy in Statistics Finland 's licensing service.

Where necessary, the following appendices must also be attached to the application: 

  • Data protection description (register description) must be submitted always when the intended use of the data file is a released data file, i.e. the data file is released with direct identifiers or when register data are planned to be linked to a survey.
  • Licences of other authorities when the data selection is made for the target population submitted by the applicant, or the target population’s personal identity codes have been obtained elsewhere than from Statistics Finland.
  • Licences of other authorities when unit-level data from other authorities are transferred to remote access use.
  • Free-form organisation-level account of the use and processing of the data file abroad must be submitted whenever the method of using the data is released data and the data are used in some foreign organisation.
  • Model for an information or consent form of the research subject must be submitted for viewing when Statistics Finland’s data are planned to be combined to survey data.

If data from sources other than Statistics Finland are also used in the research, they should be described as accurately as possible. The combining of external data with Statistics Finland's data always takes place at Statistics Finland within the framework of the Statistics Act. If the results of the inquiry are to be combined with Statistics Finland's data, data suppliers should be informed of this already at the data collection stage.

In the application phase, no data files must be submitted to Statistics Finland (such as the target population's personal identity codes). The licence processor gives instructions for delivering personal identity codes and own data when the user licence has been approved.

3. When the application arrives at Statistics Finland, we check whether the application is ready.

If there are shortcomings in the application, we will send a complementary request.

The placement of an application in the processing queue is determined based on the “application ready” date. The application is complete when it includes the required information upon arrival or when the information according to the complementary request has been submitted to the Research Services. The application cannot be placed in the queue until the information according to the complementary request has been submitted. With regard to the fluency of processing, please respond to any requests for complementary information and any other contacting related to the processing of the applications as soon as possible, within two weeks of receiving the message at the latest.

4. When an application comes in for processing, the processor of the application finds out whether the data file can be formed and whether it can be released for research use.

When the processing of an application starts, the processor is in contact with the researcher. As the processing progresses, the processor instructs the applicant, for example, to submit personal data. We provide the form templates needed for remote access use to be filled in by the applicant at the application processing stage.

The time of processing depends on the extent and complexity of the data used in the research project. In straightforward cases, the processing of the user licence takes one to two weeks, in more complicated cases several months must be reserved for the processing. In the most demanding cases, the licence application must be approved by the Board of Statistical Ethics, which meets approximately once a month.

5. When a user licence has been granted, we will notify the applicant of the decision by email.

6. We conclude an agreement with the researcher about the research service.

The agreement specifies the delivery mode of the data, the timetable and the content and price of the service. The timetable and price depend on the content of the service. The delivery modes are data use through a remote access system, data use at the Research Laboratory and in certain cases release of data to the researcher's use. The agreement becomes valid when both parties have signed it.

7. We form the data file at Statistics Finland and deliver it as agreed to the researcher.

8. We send an invoice for the user licence, data and remote access use as agreed.

Changes to user licence

You can apply for extension of data, addition of a user, continuation or change of the use location from Finland abroad with the same application at one time. The previous decision’s reference number/case number must always be added to the application.

Fill in the application in Statistics Finland 's licensing service.

If you are only applying for a continuation or a change to users in the project, you still need to select the data files for the project and place them in the cart to fill in the application form. If other applications related to the same project are needed at a later date, you can copy the same application and use it as a template for your new application.

Select Addition of user or Continuation of licence under Type of application at the top of the application form if you are applying for a change in users and/or a continuation

Extension of data

Type of application: extension of user licence. A change is sought for a licence that has already been granted. The change may concern Statistics Finland’s new data or new selection years of data according to a granted licence, the need to attach new data from other authorities or to extend the intended use (e.g. a new sub-project). Describe in the application as precisely as possible the new data to be added to the data. 

Submit appended to the application:

  • An up-to-date research plan

Change in the researcher group

Type of application: addition of user. When there is a change to the users of an already granted licence, e.g. a new user, the user's organisation changes or the person responsible for the project changes. 

Submit appended to the application:

  • Pledge of secrecy if not submitted earlier
  • Licence of another authority if the project has material from another authority

Continuation of licence

Type of licence: continuation of licence. Application for additional time to a granted licence.

Change of place of use from Finland abroad

If the place of use of the data changes from Finland abroad, the user licence must be updated. For use from abroad, the research project must be connected with a Finnish organisation. Remote access is established with a secure connection (e.g. VPN) through the organisation that has made the agreement and the customer organisation is responsible for the remote work and remote connection of its employees.