Using the MRDC

Persons wishing to conduct research at a Research Data Center (RDC) must submit a research proposal to the Center for Economic Studies (CES) to use Census Bureau data or to the federal agency responsible for the data set that the researcher wishes to access.

This RDC is a joint venture between the Census Bureau and the University of Michigan. Access to the MRDC is provided at no charge to University of Michigan faculty and graduate students. Other researchers should inquire to the MRDC for fee information.

Researchers who wish to develop a proposal to conduct research at the MRDC should first contact the RDC administrator. The researcher should discuss the proposed project with the administrator to determine whether the research fits with the Bureau’s mandate, is feasible, is likely to provide benefits to Census Bureau programs under Title 13 of the U.S. Code (for Census Bureau data only), is designed to produce model based statistical estimates, and that the research output will not pose undue risk of disclosing information about an individual survey respondent.

Once the RDC administrator and the researcher have agreed it is sensible to proceed, the researcher submits to the administrator a completed Preliminary Proposal to use Census Bureau data, or submits their proposal for other federal agency data directly to that agency. For Census Bureau data proposals the administrator will review the summary, advise the researcher of any suggestions for refinement, and forward the document to the Lead Administrator at CES and Project Review Coordinator in the Census Bureau’s Research and Methodology Directorate.

For resources for preparing a proposal, visit our proposal guidelines page.

Proposal Guidelines

Apply for access to MRDC data.

Research Guide

Information for current MRDC researchers.

MRDC RA Support

Information about hiring an RA.