Introducing the Standard Application Process (SAP)
Requesting Access to Restricted BTS Microdata through the Federal Standard Application Process (SAP)
The application process for requesting access to Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) sensitive or restricted microdata is evolving.
The Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act of 2018 called for the Federal government to establish a standard application process (SAP) through which agencies, the Congressional Budget Office, State, local, and Tribal governments, researchers, and other individuals, as appropriate, may apply for access to confidential microdata.
In response, the federal statistical system has developed the SAP Portal at www.ResearchDataGov.org. The SAP Portal is a web-based data catalog and standard application that will serve as a “front door” to apply for confidential data from any of the 16 principal federal statistical agencies and units for evidence building purposes.
The SAP Portal has been developed in a phased approach. On February 28, 2022, the federal statistical agencies launched the SAP Portal data catalog to provide prospective applicants with comprehensive metadata about federal statistical agencies’ confidential microdata. On December 8, 2022, the SAP Portal will begin accepting applications to access confidential microdata.
To learn more about the SAP, please visit the Standard Application Process Overview webpage.
How to Apply
Beginning in December 2022, BTS will accept applications using the SAP Portal common application.
- Browse the BTS SAP microdata inventory,
- Select a dataset of interest, and,
- Click the "Request Access" button to begin the application process.
Restricted Use Data Licensing
The Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) within the Department of Transportation (DOT) allows researchers and agencies to apply for licenses to securely access restricted use microdata files under certain conditions. Licenses are only needed for microdata not available in public use files. The list of currently available datasets is available at the BTS SAP microdata inventory page.
Use the application functionality of the SAP to apply for access. BTS will review your application in a timely manner.
Contact BTS RDG for More Information
If you have more questions or need help with your application, email us at BTSResearchDataGov@dot.gov
Please include the name of the dataset(s) you are interested in so that your inquiry can be properly directed.
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