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Project Approval and Management Procedures

The Project Approval and Management Procedures were developed to ensure that all projects, which seek to use the MLDS, provide information and analyses that conform to the requirements of Maryland law and the Research Agenda established by the MLDS Governing Board. The procedures also ensure that projects: (a) are subject to a fair and consistent process of review; (b) squarely address the needs of Maryland policymakers and practitioners; (c) necessitate the use of MLDS cross-sector data; and (d) are being proposed by qualified individuals.

These procedures are required for all projects that seek to use MLDS data, including projects proposed by staff of the MLDS Center, members of the MLDS Center Research Branch, and researchers or analysts who are not affiliated with the MLDS Center. These procedures do not apply to a data request.

To use the MLDS for your project, please follow these steps:

  1. Carefully review the Project Approval and Management Procedures;
  2. If needed*, schedule a meeting with someone at the MLDS Center about your project (email:;
  3. Complete the Project Approval - Detailed Application;
  4. Complete the Project Approval - Online Application and upload the Detailed Application and all supporting materials; and
  5. Once your application is submitted, the review process will begin pursuant to the Project Review Schedule. The project review is guided by the MLDSC Internal Review Form.

*When to ask for help:
  1. First time applicants;
  2. Not sure if your project meets all the requirements;
  3. Not sure if the data supports your research; or
  4. You want to better understand the review process and the types of questions and issues key stakeholders may raise.