Gill Harper attended this ESRC-ONS seminar to contribute to the debate on how administrative data sources can play a role in providing future Census counts and small area socio-demographic data. Gill, representing geocreate, nkm and previous ESRC funded research, has many years experience in utilising administrative data sources and provided her perspective on the advantages and disadvantages associated with this. Overall, the Beyond 2011 team feel positive about the opportunity that administrative sources offer. The final recommendation on what form the future Census will take will be made in September 2014 with a full cost benefit analysis and high level design and implementation.
A seminar on the 20th June 2012 presented the new industry format address gazetteer ‘AddressBase’. This will combine the various existing gazetteers the NLPG, Royal Mail PAF, OS Address Point and OS Address Layer 2 into one uniform product. This will have the advantage of all government and commercial agencies using the same product for consistency. The UPRN from the NLPG will be the unique identifier, offering huge opportunity for further data linkage and insight across these agencies. GeoIntel and nkm have been using the UPRN in this way for many years, and welcome this new initiative.
A research report on how administrative data can be utilised to create more effective household level statistics has been published by Cass Business School, written by Gill Harper of geocreate and Les Mayhew of Cass Business School. Funding was provided by Cass Business School, and the research extends previous work on using administrative data to count populations and other local policy and planning applications.
Household statistics are important because household characteristics such as occupancy, average resident age, tenure status and gender composition are often good predictors of social outcomes, such as the take up of health, social care and education services.They are also significant determinants of life expectancy, and the household unit is also used to benchmark the poverty line.
The paper identifies a significant gap in the availability and quality of household statistics at local level which adversely impacts upen the quality of local decision making and investment decisions.
Gill Harper of geocreate presented at this informative conference, organised by the Northern Ireland Longitudinal Study Research Forum at the University of Ulster in Belfast. Gill promoted the nkm administrative data population estimation methodology and heard many interesting points of view on what is required from the Census in the future and what form it will take, including examples from Finland and Sweden. The consensus was that future utilisation of administrative data to count the population in the UK was inevitable, and the ONS Beyond 2011 project continue to explore this.
Two papers have been published in the Journal of Applied Spatial Analysis and Policy describing a new method for counting populations using only administrative data and the applications it can be used for. Written by Gill Harper of geocreate and Les Mayhew based on ESRC funded UPTAP (Understanding Population Trends and Processes) research at Cass Business School, the authors argue that administrative data provide a viable alternative to counting populations that is more timely, detailed and cost efficient than the existing Census.