National Research Information System

The National Research Information System (NRIS) will be a hub where you can easily find information about research, science and innovation in New Zealand.

What NRIS will provide

The National Research Information System (NRIS) will help answer questions such as:

  • What projects are underway?
  • Who is working on them?
  • Who is an expert I can contact on a particular topic?
  • What are they working on?
  • How much is being spent on a particular area?
  • Which areas need additional resources and support?

NRIS will open up data on the research, science and innovation sector, simplify administration for researchers and research organisations, and improve the quality of data. This helps researchers focus on their work, fosters innovation between research, business and community, and enables funders to make smarter investments.

Common data standards (see the NRIS Data Specification document below) for the research, science and innovation sector enable organisations to share the same types of data easily from a variety of systems.

NRIS Data Specification (Version 1.1.1) [PDF, 2.6 MB]

NRIS received $10.1 million in funding (over 4 years) in the 2018 Budget.

Timeline for 2019

NRIS will initially contain information about research, science and innovation funded wholly, or in part, by government.

The first iteration of NRIS, expected by the end of 2019, involves organisations that provide significant public funding for research:

  • Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment
  • Ministry for Primary Industries
  • Health Research Council
  • Royal Society Te Apārangi.

From late 2019 other organisations will be able to join NRIS as soon as they are ready to supply data. The initial focus of this phase will be on other major funding organisations.

Benefits of NRIS

Once fully implemented, NRIS will:

  • give a better picture of what research, science and innovation is happening
  • make it easier to find experts and partners
  • help to develop new products and services
  • create greater exposure of New Zealand work
  • reduce the reporting burden
  • reduce duplication of activities
  • inform better understanding of the research sector
  • support smarter decisions and investments.

Data principles

NRIS is guided by the Government’s approach to data and information, especially the emphasis on open data and the stewardship of public data.

Open data that is easily accessible and widely used creates many benefits, some of which are only discovered after the data becomes available.

NRIS data principles

  1. Provide a system-wide view of research, science and innovation information.
  2. Ensure open data which is easily accessible and widely used.
  3. Protect personal and commercially sensitive data.
  4. Enable the re-use of data.
  5. Reduce collection and reporting burden.
  6. Ensure data is trusted, authoritative and well-managed.
  7. Enable easy and automatic movement of data between systems.

Data security and confidentiality

Who has access to data in the NRIS is an important area to get right. We will be adopting best practice in terms of security and access protocols by taking advice from Stats NZ.

NRIS will hold both data that can be widely-shared as well as personal and commercially-sensitive data that needs to be protected.

All data within NRIS will be held securely and access will be managed so that open data is readily available and data that needs protection is kept confidential.

Aggregate statistical views of all data will be developed and published to help better understand research in New Zealand.

An independent data stewardship and oversight group is being established to oversee NRIS and the data that it will hold.

NRIS overview document

The National Research Information System Overview provides an overview of the purpose, benefits and design of NRIS.

National Research Information System Overview [PDF, 762 KB]

In this section

NRIS development

We are working in partnership with the research, science and innovation sector to build a National Research Information System that benefits all participants and users.

NRIS tools and resources

Find technical documentation, guidelines and tools for the National Research Information System (NRIS).