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Privacy notice

In line with the new EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), there are certain things that we need to let you know about how your information will be processed. In this privacy notice, we explain the legal basis for data processing, who will have access to your personal data, how your data will be used, stored and deleted and who you can contact with a query or a complaint.

Who we are

The National Centre for Social Research (NatCen) has been commissioned by the Department for Education (DfE) to carry out this research project. For the purpose of data protection, the DfE is the data controller for personal data processed as part of this project and NatCen and Populus will be the data processors. 

Lawful basis for processing your data

For this project, the lawful basis for processing your data is “Legitimate interest”. This is because the collection and processing of this data is necessary to inform the conduction of the Government’s post-18 review of education and funding in England

You can contact the team at NatCen by email with any questions about the research at: 

Who will have access to my personal data?

NatCen are carrying out this research and will have access to participant information (including contact details), audio recordings of interviews, interview notes and survey responses. All data gathered from interviews and surveys will be anonymised before being analysed and archived.

The external polling provider Populus ( will have collected and have access to the data from both the initial participant screening survey and boost survey. Populus will then provide NatCen with a database of respondents who meet the screening criteria and have expressed interest in being interviewed, who will be invited to take part in subsequent research activities. Populus is on our approved supplier list and compliant with all of our information security policies.

How will my data be treated?

Your personal data will be kept in the strictest confidence. The findings collected will be used for research purposes only. Data gathered from the two surveys and interviews with participants will be used to inform the final report to the DfE. This report and any subsequent publications arising from this research will not identify any individual participant.

At the end of the research, all data will be anonymised before being archived. All personal information, and any other data held on the project, will be securely deleted once the project is complete in October 2019.

Who can I contact with a query or a complaint?

If you have any questions about how your data will be used, please contact the NatCen’s Data Protection Officer at

Under GDPR, you also have the right to lodge a complaint with the Information Commissioner’s Office if your concerns are not being addressed satisfactorily. Please go to for more information.