OPEN ACCESS TO DATA:
ANONYMISATION, DATA PROTECTION & CONFIDENTIALITY
OCTOBER 12- 13, 2006
Place: Hotel Golden Age, Room: Sapfo,
57 Michalakopoulou st., ATHENS, GREECE
In view of new and constantly emerging attitudes and practices towards an Open Data Sharing Culture,
the issues of anonymisation, data protection and confidentiality are highly relevant in a practical manner,
and therefore there is the need to share views, national practices and future planning of procedures.
The subject seems relevant in the context of CESSDA policy concerning the degree of openness to data exchange
and the development of relevant applications and guidelines to be undertaken in the near future.
Currently, anonymisation procedures are applied for data protection and confidentiality purposes according to
national formal and ethical directives with varying degrees of specificity and applicability. A common application
of such procedures at CESSDA or European level is certainly inapplicable due to varying degrees of legal and cultural
restrictions, therefore a discussion on problems, practices and proposals will contribute to their documentation and,
hopefully, to methods towards the maximum possible degree of their homogenisation. Despite the difficulties there are
initiatives towards open access to data by European and international organisations. These initiatives are aided by
technological developments, but these do not fully target to open access for all types of data and metadata.
Data protection is a concept referring to both the purely technical issue of data preservation in various forms
for future use, and to legal issues of confidentiality concerning personal information. The first concept has been
discussed in the past in the context of data archiving and must not constitute the main topic of this seminar;
the second concept has been raised in various occasions (projects, workshops), but there is no record of dealing
with the issue in a homogeneous manner towards common practices with the development of tools, mechanisms,
procedures and guidelines for Open Access to data. This issue needs further discussion both in terms of philosophy
and actual field applications.