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Opening of the Wismut Data for External Researchers; Call for Proposals


Bundesamt fuer Strahlenschutz

PD Dr. Michaela Kreuzer

Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS)
Ingolstaedter Landstr. 1
85764 Oberschleissheim

Steering Committee

postbox 12 06 29
53048 Bonn

The German uranium miners cohort study (Wismut cohort) is one of the largest single cohort studies of miners occupationally exposed to radon and its progeny.

Results of the fourth mortality follow-up (1946-2013) have been published (Kreuzer et al., 2017), see also full publication list. This data set is now open to the scientific community for further analyses. A short description of the study has been published Kreuzer et al., 2010) and a technical report with a detailed description can also be downloaded (Kreuzer et al., 2011).

In order to request the data, external researchers are asked to submit a proposal indicating study questions and proposed analyses of the data set (see below). This proposal will be evaluated independently by the Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS) and an International Advisory Board called "Steering Committee on the German Uranium Mining Studies" that has been established by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) within the German Commission on Radiological Protection (Deutsche Strahlenschutzkommission, SSK). The SSK advises the BMU on issues involving the protection against dangers of ionising and non-ionising radiation. Given a favourable evaluation, BfS will define the modalities on how to use the data. After the proposal has been accepted a detailed data description (coding, missings) will be provided in addition to the list of available variables (see below).


There are no longer deadlines for proposal submission. Proposals can be submitted throughout the year The BfS informs about its own analysis plans in order to avoid overlap on a regular basis (see lists of questions currently investigated by the BfS and ongoing projects of external researchers).

How to submit a proposal?

Proposals should be submitted via the Data Transfer Agreement form. A proposal should clearly indicate the following points:

  • Title, scientific background and goals of the intended project
  • Name and affiliation of the principal investigator (PI).
  • Scientific expertise of the PI
  • Further individuals involved in the analysis
  • Intended source of funding
  • List of variables needed for the analysis
  • Intended pooling of the data with other data.

Two forms, the Data Transfer Agreement and the Declaration of Conflict of Interest for Proposal Submitters, have to be completed and signed by the principal investigator. If permission to obtain the data is granted by the BfS, then the responsible administration officers of the principal investigators' affiliation will be required to sign these forms before the data can be released.

The proposal can be submitted on paper or electronically. They should be submitted in parallel to the BfS and the Steering Committee (addresses see above).

A confirmation of receipt will be sent to the applicant, preferably by e-mail. The result of the evaluation procedure will be sent to the applicant after completion of the referral process, which is expected to be not later than six months after the proposal submission.

How to avoid conflicts with BfS' own analyses?

BfS is conducting data analyses on its own. A list of questions currently investigated by the BfS is regularly updated.

How to avoid conflicts with presently running analyses from other applicants?

A list of granted and currently running projects by external researchers is regularly updated.

Is there any funding?

BfS does not offer funding. In cases where proposed analyses strongly meet BfS' own interests, funding might be considered.

Advisory Board

The Advisory Board is a working group of the German Commission on Radiological Protection (Strahlenschutzkommission, SSK) called Steering Committee on the German Uranium Mining Studies.

State of 2018.12.17

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