Switzerland: FORS

Swiss Centre of Expertise in the Social Sciences (FORS)

FORS is the Swiss national centre of expertise in the social sciences. It maintains a national social science data archive, facilitates access to official statistical micro-data, and represents Switzerland on the Consortium of European Social Science Data Archives (CESSDA). In addition, FORS combines research infrastructures like the Swiss Household Panel (SHP), the Swiss Election Study, the Swiss Social Report, and the Swiss parts of several cross-national surveys (European Social Survey, International Social Survey Program, Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe SHARE, Luxembourg Income Study). FORS activities are co-financed by the Swiss Confederation, the Swiss National Science Foundation, and its host institution, the University of Lausanne.

FORS has extensive experience and existing systems for the storage, documentation, and dissemination of complex datasets. It was a consortium member to the FP7 Data without Boundaries project, and continues to play a role in the CESSDA-ERIC transformation process. FORS also participated in the CESSDA PPP project and was a partner in the FP7 SERSCIDA project.


Brian Kleiner PhD is Head of Data and Research Information Services at FORS. Mr Kleiner has 17 years of experience in applied social sciences. He currently oversees all data service activities at FORS, is member of the FORS executive board, and participates regularly in CESSDA developments. He was involved in the SERSCIDA project from the beginning, and will serve as Principal Investigator for SEEDS.

Renate Kunz MA is working in the Data Service group at FORS. Ms. Kunz has a history degree (MA) and has been working in several different archives and library environments in the last 7 years. She has a Masters degree in library and archival sciences (MSc) and is mainly concerned with digital preservation and audit and certification issues at FORS. Ms. Kunz was involved in the SERSCIDA project, and will be the project manager of the SEEDS project.

Bojana Tasic MSc is Head of IT at FORS, and will be the technical coordinator in the SEEDS project. Ms. Tasic has over 10 years of commercial experience in the areas of software engineering, technical analysis, design, integration, development and deployment of distributed Internet applications. She graduated from Information Systems at the University of Belgrade, Faculty of Organizational Sciences, Department for Information Systems. Ms. Tasic has practical knowledge of IT matters related to social science research, as well as of software industry best practices, and she was the technical expert for the SERSCIDA project.