Aim of the Historical Sample of the Netherlands (HSN) is to construct life courses as completely as possible for a representative sample of the nineteenth and early twentieth century population of the Netherlands and to make the data available to scientific researchers in the Netherlands and abroad.
Although the database of the HSN is an historical database in which the largest part of the included individuals is no longer alive, some still are. This implies that the HSN is bound to the regulations of the Dutch Personal Data Protection Act (Wet Bescherming Persoonsgegevens). Secondly, although most of the data come from records which are open for the public, some of the data have only been made available by the archives for the HSN-database only for scientific or statistical research and under the condition of anonymous use of the data.
The handling of the data in the HSN database has been determined in the HSN privacy regulations (in Dutch). As a consequence of all data in the HSN are only accessible for scientific or statistical research and all data are made anonymous. Also, in case of possibly still living persons, the HSN data will only be made available for researchers after they have signed a license agreement (this will be sent to you upon request) in which the researcher agrees to respect the HSN privacy regulations; the anonymous nature of the data and declares to use the data only for the mentioned goal and not to redistribute the data. For researchers who for research purposes are specifically in need of the non-anonymous data, individual arrangements can be made in which data can be handled in a safe environment.
By way of these regulations the HSN follows the Code of Professional Conduct and Ethics in the Use of Personal Data in Scientific Research as it is proposed by the Social Science Council of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (Gedragscode voor gebruik van persoonsgegevens in wetenschappelijk onderzoek (Koninklijke Nederlandse Akademie van Wetenschappen, Amsterdam, april 2003)).