Data Protection for Research Participants

We take our responsibilities to the processing and security of research data seriously, this includes complying with the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the UK’s Data Protection Act in all our research projects. Information about data protection that applies to all research projects at Lancaster can be found below.

As a research participant you should read the specific research project’s Participant Information Sheet in detail and feel free to ask any questions regarding the study including how your personal data will be used and stored.

This information will be kept up to date and you can revisit this site at any time.


Lawful Basis

Lancaster University’s lawful basis for processing identifiable personal data for research is ‘task in the public interest‘.

When processing special categories of data, such as health data or political opinions, Lancaster researchers are processing in accordance to the condition ‘necessary for scientific research in accordance with safeguards’.

Please be aware that due to the university’s lawful basis for processing data for research, some of your data rights may be affected; such as you may not be able to withdraw your information after it has been combined with other participant’s information. If you are unsure about this, please discuss in advance with the research team who will be able to advise you.


Please note: The above lawful basis for processing research data applies to all research projects at Lancaster University. As Lancaster has an ethical review process we are confident that participants will be aware of how their data will be used/stored and so do not feel it is ethical to re-contact all participants to inform them of the new lawful basis, this does not affect participant rights.


Data Security

The university has robust security information policies in place to protect your personal information. All staff and students at the university have a responsibility to make sure that your data is handled securely. You can read the policy on our webpages here.



If you have any concerns or complaints about the use of your personal data in Lancaster’s research projects please contact the university’s Data Protection Officer, Mike Abbotts .

Other questions or concerns about individual research projects should be directed to the contacts shown on the project’s Participant Information Sheet.