The Utah Data Research Center aims to conduct meaningful research to inform public policy initiatives; providing the platform for policymakers, practitioners and the general public to make data-informed decisions.
To create a world-class state of Utah data research platform to empower stakeholders.
The Utah Data Research Center was created in 2017, with the passage of Senate Bill 194, and signed into law under 35A-14. We integrate data from:
- Utah System of Higher Education
- Utah System of Technical Colleges
- Utah State Board of Education
- Utah Department of Health
- Utah Department of Workforce Services
The data provided from our partner agencies constitute the "P20W" pipeline. P20W captures the behavior of individuals starting in early childhood, through primary and secondary schools, higher education and lastly as they enter the workforce. The data are stored on an annual basis and are considered, as a set, longitudinal--allowing for the study of long-term patterns.
Our research provides objective insights into public policy queries to help decision makers find meaningful and impactful solutions to the issues facing the state of Utah. The Utah Data Research Center significantly decreases the cost of our partners and key stakeholders to receive data and analyses, by leveraging technology resources to create efficiencies in the exchange and release of data--between agencies and external requestors.
The Utah Data Research Center produces "data products" and "data as a product."
Data products include:
- Academic-quality research
- Interactive visualizations
Our data products help communicate complex ideas in easily understood formats to aide interested parties in making data-informed decisions. Data as a product is a simpler and more efficient way to access the P20W data, helping ensure access only by approved external researchers to conduct and provide answers to research within, and potentially extending beyond, the P20W domain.
We employ researchers, data communication, security and privacy experts, software engineers, and project managers to achieve the mission of the Utah Data Research Center and support our partners and stakeholders. Our team is committed to maintaining a state-of-the-art data research system for the benefit of Utah's citizens.
Designed for Privacy
Our infrastructure is designed to ensure the privacy of the data it contains. We adhere to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, the Student Data Protection Act and the Student Privacy Acts, which provide guidance to the safeguarding of sensitive data contained within our database. This guidance has been integrated into the design, and creation of the digital and physical architecture of the Utah Data Research Center.
Personally identifiable information, the information necessary to properly identify a person, is employed solely for matching records across data sources, and never revealed to external researchers or the public. In addition, the Utah Data Research Center limits the possibility of creating identifying records due to linking datasets by employing a rules engine.
Our data governance and privacy documents were drafted in consultation with the U.S. Department of Education's Privacy Technical Assistance Center and incorporates state-of-the-art techniques, concepts, and procedures.
Optimized for Research
Our database is optimized for research, with data normalized, de-identified and matched across datasets for ease of use, privacy, and efficiency. Our researchers have access to data starting from early education through primary and secondary education; postsecondary education, including public universities, public colleges, and technical colleges; and beyond into the workforce.
Our research is directed by an annual research agenda, which is developed by the Utah Data Research Center's partner agencies. Our original research products are published publicly through formal reports, online data narratives, and in-person presentations.