Winter 2015/2016

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UK Data Service Newsletter

#DataImpact2015: Data infrastructure and the big issues in public policy debate

'The hottest ticket on the Euston Road' #DataImpact2015 took place on 2 December.

Hosted by Jane Elliott, Chief Executive of the ESRC, and Matthew Woollard, Director of the UK Data Service, a panel of leading data innovators explored data re-use in policy and research, sharing their experiences of demonstrating data enhanced impact. Data innovators from the public, commercial and higher education sectors discussed the challenges and opportunities for data infrastructure in relation to the big issues in public policy debate.

View the videos and the Storify of the event.

Undergraduate Dissertation Prize up for grabs

Undergraduate Dissertation Prize up for grabsAre you an undergraduate student completing your dissertation in the academic year 2015/16?  Do you want your research to be read by other researchers, users of data and practitioners?

The UK Data Service will be awarding a prize of £250 for a thesis that demonstrates flair and originality in using quantitative data. The abstract of the winning dissertation, along with its key findings, will also be publicised on our website and to our networks within the social sciences through this quarterly Newsletter.

Supporting human rights organisations to deliver insights from data

Supporting human rights organisations to deliver insights from dataThe UK Data Service held a workshop “Supporting human rights organisations to deliver insights from data” on 29-30 October 2015 at the University of Essex, with support from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) as part of its work to engage with civil society. We are delighted to present the Proceedings from the workshop

Human Rights organisations attending the workshop included those involved in supporting victims of human trafficking, torture, unfair trials, conflict and war and other vulnerable situations. Data about the people represented by these charities offers particular challenges around privacy and data protection, and hence, wider sharing; challenges that the Service is uniquely positioned to address.

New UK Data Service project on big data and household energy

New UK Data Service project on big data and household energyA team from the UK Data Service has been awarded funding from the ESRC and National Research Foundation, South Africa, under the ESRC/NRF International Centre Partnerships in 2015, to work with South Africa's DataFirst on big data infrastructure.

The project 'Smarter Household Energy Data: infrastructure for policy and planning' aims to strengthen data expertise and research partnerships between South Africa and the UK through the formation of a new network created to investigate access to, and the use of, household energy data for policymaking and planning.

The team are interested in making contact with researchers already using household energy data who may wish to contribute to the development of tools. Please contact Louise Corti.

You can also follow the progress of the project with our blog.

Do you use census data for research?

Do you use census data for research?Census Support’s suite of handy research tools, make finding the data you need more intuitive and enables you to do more with these data than ever before! 

Census Support have pieced together data from three national statistical providers — the Office for National Statistics (ONS), National Records of Scotland (NRS) and the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) — and have packaged these data in a way to make them more user-friendly for researchers. So, whether its aggregate, flow, micro or boundary data that you're interested in, you've come to the right place.

Read more news

Data enriched research, data enhanced impact: the importance of UK data infrastructure

Matthew WoollardMatthew Woollard, Director of the UK Data Service, discusses the importance of UK data infrastructure and how the systematic management and sharing of research data can lead to many benefits for the research community and the public. Here he introduces #DataImpact2015 where a panel of leading data innovators will explore data re-use in policy and research, sharing their experiences of demonstrating data enhanced impact. (Data Impact 2015 held on 2 December 2015)
Read more blog posts

Creating percentile charts of body mass index by age and gender

BMI indexThe body mass index, or BMI, is a calculation used to determine the level of body fat and it can help doctors determine an individual's overall fitness and their risk of developing chronic diseases. When considering BMI among the population, it is important to know average values by age and gender.
Read more case studies

Featured this issue

New data resources and developments including our new Census table finder tool, resources for librarians and latest depositing data video

New table finder tool for Census flow data

New table finder tool for Census flow dataWe are delighted to announce the launch of the Table Finder tool, making it easier to explore 2011 census flow tabular data. The tool was developed by Nomis (a service provided by the Office for National Statistics, to give free access to the most detailed and up-to-date UK labour market statistics from official sources), in collaboration with experts from the UK Data Service Census Support team.

Find out more about our Census tools for research including open GeoConvert featured in our news item Do you use census data for research.

Introducing our data and resources for librarians

Introducing our data and resources for librariansDo you work for an academic library? Would you like to know more about what the UK Data Service can offer both you and your students?

We have created a suite of materials to illustrate the wide range of data resources and support available to assist you in dealing with user queries.

Mary Gregory - Depositing data with the UK Data Service

Depositor videoMary Gregory, former Statistician at the Department of Energy and Climate Change, discusses the impact of making data available through the UK Data Service.

New data releases

We had a number of new releases this quarter including: SN 7833 English Housing Survey: Fuel Poverty Dataset, 2013 (years 2003 to 2011 also released)
SN 7818  Annual Population Survey Household Dataset, January - December, 2014
SN 7858 Annual Population Survey, October 2014 - September 2015
SN 7867 National Child Development Study: Sweep 8, 2008-2009: Geographical Identifiers: Secure Access (sweeps 6 and 7 also released)
SN 7869 National Child Development Study: Sweep 9, 2011 Census Boundaries, 2013-2014: Geographical Identifiers: Secure Access (Sweep 9, 2001 Census Boundaries, 2013-14 also released)
SN 852060 Measuring Impact in the Third Sector

This is just a small selection of the many new data collections released this quarter.

If you want to keep informed of all our new data releases and new editions, you can receive a weekly comprehensive list by subscribing to JiscMail.

You can also browse all the latest updates in our collection using our Discover interface.

Data in the pipeline

*Our Collections Development team are currently negotiating the acquisition of a number of collections, including:

ESRC Long-term Crime Trends project (British Crime Survey and British Social Attitudes Survey)
The Household Electricity Survey from the Department of Energy and Climate Change

ONS Studies:
Annual Population Survey Dataset, January - December 2015
Quarterly Labour Force Survey, October - December 2015

Quarterly Labour Force Survey updates are usually released within two months of the quarter end.
*Data delivery dates may be subject to change. Find out more about how we make our data available on our regular depositor's page.


Here is a selection of events on economic and social data:

Future events

Events during the next quarter include: To see a comprehensive list, visit our events page and view our 2016 Programme of Webinars.

Past events

Events and workshops our experts have taken part in include: The full list of past events and their related presentations can be found on the past events page.

Job opportunities

VacanciesThe UK Data Service currently has some exciting job opportunities. Located at the University of Essex, the Data Archive, part of the UK Data Service, is internationally acknowledged as expert in the areas of acquiring, curating and providing access to data.

Vacancies @UKDataService @UKDataArchive

Let us showcase your work

Write for us: the Data Impact Blog is a hub for anyone interested in maximising the impact of social, population and economic data in research and policy. If you would like to contribute to the blog, please contact us at
Case studies: every day, data from the UK Data Service collection are used to inform research, influence policy and teach the next generation of social scientists. If you would like to submit a case study, simply download the form.
Data Impact Blog
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