How to apply

How to work with Lifelines data explained in 7 steps.

How to apply

Step 0: Preparation is everything!

Use the Lifelines Wiki to enrich your proposal. We have a complex, daily growing dataset. Find information in the Wiki about:

  • The cohort population
  • The (timeline of) general assessments
  • Additional assessments
  • The available variables, organized by theme

Step 1: Fill in the application contact form

  • First check the overview of approved applications to avoid too much overlap with an existing project.
  • Start your application by filling in this application contact form. 
  • We will send you a specified application form for you to fill in. To gain access, this form including your research questions, required data and/or samples, financing, and time line of the research must be submitted
  • In case of requesting existing data: make your data selection using the Lifelines catalogue.

Step 2: application review

A submitted application will be reviewed within two weeks by the Lifelines Research Office, evaluating whether the proposed research group, research questions and requested data/biosample selection are compatible with the aim of Lifelines. Note that almost all submitted applications have been approved.

Step 3: offer and DMTA

Once an application is approved, Lifelines will prepare an offer and Data and Material Transfer Agreement (DMTA) for you to sign. Since Lifelines is a not-for-profit organization, we charge researchers only the cost price of the release and/or additional collection of data and biosamples. If your application concerns a data release, one of our data managers will contact you and you will receive the offer and DMTA within two weeks after the application has been approved. If your application concerns the release of both data and samples, or a request for an additional study or linkage, one of our project managers will contact you.

Step 4: release

In general, data will be released within two weeks after signing the offer and DMTA. The data will be released in a secure virtual working environment or Lifelines UMCG high performance cluster (read more about the data services) . Release of biosamples will follow a project-specific time line. In case of an additional study, the Lifelines project manager will coordinate with the researchers when the requested data and/or samples will be collected and when they will be released.

Step 5: information on results and publications

If all goes well, the release of data and biosamples will result in one or more scientific publications. There is no set minimum or maximum amount of publications per application and Lifelines does not require any co-authorships. We do ask you to mention using Lifelines data in your publication. To enable other researchers to use the new results in their research in the field of healthy ageing, we ask you to return the results of the analyses you performed on the data, measurements, and samples.

Step 6: evaluation and feedback

As Lifelines continuously strives to improve, you will be asked to fill in an evaluation form with all positive and negative feedback about the services you received.