The Coleridge Initiative

Providing a secure platform where users connect to relevant datasets for policy research using confidential micro-data.


The Administrative Data Research Facility (ADRF) provides a secure platform to host confidential micro-data. The ADRF is designed to promote collaboration, facilitate documentation, and provide information about use to data stewards. See our whitepapers for a more thorough description of ADRF components.

The ADRF has hosted almost 50 confidential government datasets from 12 different agencies at all levels of government. The ADRF has received Authorization to Operate from the Census Bureau, has achieved a FedRAMP Moderate approval and is listed on the FedRAMP Marketplace.


Collaboration Module

Datasets are complex in their own right; when data need to be combined from different sources, across different policy domains, it is necessary for teams of researchers to work together. This means that collaborative activities must be fostered and tools provided so that it is easy to share information.

Security Module

The ADRF FedRAMP security procedures are documented in a 400 page system security plan submitted to the Census Bureau. Security is implemented in three layers: Cloud infrastructure, operational security and application layer security. After reviewing our completed FedRAMP pre-Readiness Assessment, the Census Bureau has provided the ADRF system with an Authority to Test. We expect Provisional FedRAMP approval by August 2017 and full FedRAMP approval by September 2017.

Data Stewardship Module

The module controls who has access to which data and what ADRF content is related to that data. These functions are essential in that they provide controls while also enabling straightforward answers to critical questions such as “which projects use my data?” or “how is my data being used and which by products were generated by whom?”

De-Identification Services

The ADRF has developed a library of re-usable programs that implement hashing algorithms and salting strategies that can be used to consistently hash value across data sets for de-identified comparison. We also have validated processes for project-based secure storage and reuse of salts and keys used to hash across data sets. We build a secure hashing module to the suite of tools provided to each project to support relating de-identified data sets.

Safe Data Strategy

Safe People

approved, trained researchers

Safe Projects

approved projects consistent with agency mission

Safe Data

only the minimum data required for a project is made available

Safe Settings

only access data in a secure environment

Safe Outputs

review to limit disclosure before data are released

Result in Safe Use