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Basic Policy for the Protection of Personal Information

In implementing the JGSS Research Project, we give special emphasis to the protection of personal information and strive to handle these details in a manner which respects basic human rights and protects individual privacy. Specifically, we have established the “Basic Policy for the Protection of Personal Information” as shown below, and have formulated a Personal Information Protection Committee within the Project to ensure the proper management of personal information and related matters. Through these measures, we are striving to communicate the importance of protecting personal information to all researchers, staff members, graduate students and other individuals involved in the JGSS Project.

Basic Policy for the Protection of Personal Information
(1)We will observe all laws, ordinances and other rules relating to the protection of personal information.
(2)We will ensure the safe and rigorous management of personal information in strict compliance with all relevant laws and ordinances in collecting, using and offering such information.
(3)We will take preventive and corrective measures in response to leaks, destruction, defamation and falsification of, and unauthorized access to, personal information.
(4)We will use the personal information received in the course of the Project only for previously-determined purposes.
(5)We will review our personal information protection measures and upgrade them on a regular basis.

Especially, we will ensure the safety of personal information received from respondents by observing the following rules:
The JGSS Research Center shall enter into a confidentiality agreement as well as a general business agreement with the survey company, to ensure the safe management of personal information that the company may collect or produce while conducting the survey.

Personal and other private information shall be collected only to the minimum extent necessary.

Personal information shall be collected from the master sampling list only to the extent necessary for the survey, and the contents of a survey shall be confined to the scope of academic purposes only.

The survey company shall keep the list of respondents in which their personal information is contained under its strict control, and shall not disclose the information contained therein to any of the Project members.

When any of the researchers or other individuals involved in the Project examines the sampling data for the purpose of confirming the appropriateness of the sampling method, the original list and the list of respondents collected through the sampling shall be treated with the utmost care as "personal information."

The results of any survey shall be converted into numerical data and access to such a data file shall be restricted. The data file shall be maintained and stored under strict controls. When offering information regarding respondents to any of the Project members or general researchers, personal identifiers such as the survey point and date of birth shall be removed from the data file in advance.

The original questionnaires shall be kept in a lockable cabinet and access to the area shall be strictly controlled to ensure the questionnaires will not be exposed to any third parties.

For the protection of personal information, members of the JGSS Research Project shall be made to pledge (1) not to use the data of the Project for any purposes other than those of the Project, and (2) not to offer the data to any third parties.

In the event any problem arises that threatens the safety of personal information, the problem shall be immediately reported to the Personal Information Protection Committee, which shall analyze the causes of the problem and take appropriate measures to prevent it from reoccurring.

April 2005, Directors:
TANIOKA, Ichiro (President and Professor, Osaka University of Commerce)
NITTA, Michio (Professor, Institute of Social Science, the University of Tokyo)