Legal Agreements & Supporting Documents

Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)

The MOU, also referred to as an enterprise MOU or EMOU, is the foundational agreement among the IDS contributors and sets forth the core features of the IDS structure as well as the respective legal rights and responsibilities of each party within the IDS. A good MOU will codify both the legal requirements and the operational structure of the IDS. An MOU should be written in plain, simple language so that anyone involved in the IDS (including agency leadership, operational staff, the public) can understand its terms. 

For more on MOUs, and to see samples from AISP Network sites, see Finding a Way Forward: How to Create a Strong Legal Framework for Data Integration (2022) or our Expert Panel Report, Legal Issues for IDS Use: Finding a Way Forward (2017).

Data Sharing Agreement (DSA)

While the MOU is a broad document that names the purpose, partners, and guiding principles of a data integration effort, the DSA includes the specific terms and conditions that govern how specific data are transferred, stored, and managed when shared and integrated within the IDS. The parties to the DSA are the data partner (the party which owns the data) and the IDS.

Data Use License (DUL)

The DUL, sometimes referred to as a Data Use Agreement (DUA), sets forth the terms and conditions under which an analyst, researcher, evaluator, or other outside party (“data licensee”) may gain access to data from the IDS for a specific purpose. The parties to the DUL are the IDS and the data licensee.

Sites in the AISP Network generally use an enterprise MOU to establish broad policies and procedures, a Data Sharing Agreement specific to the sharing of data from each data partner, as well as the use of a Data Use License specific to approved data access and use that is project specific.


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