We Asked, You Said, We Did

Below are some of the issues we have recently consulted on and their outcomes.

We asked

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) undertook an engagement exercise around measuring “green jobs”, from 11 August to 6 October August 2022. This sought to understand users’ interest in the topic and explore preferences for definitions, approaches, and breakdowns. 

This engagement exercise forms part of an HM Treasury-funded Economic Data Innovation Fund project on defining green jobs, with the intention of producing recognised and harmonised measures for the UK. 

For further details, please see our engagement exercise summary response document. 

We would like to thank all respondents for taking part in the engagement exercise and appreciate the time taken to share their views. 

You said

The engagement exercise received 107 responses from a range of stakeholders.  

These included:  

  • 35 responses from individuals responding in a personal capacity 
  • 33 responses from government, including local government and public bodies  
  • 15 responses from academia or research  
  • 11 responses from businesses  
  • 8 responses from other professionals  
  • 5 responses from third sector, including charities 

Around two thirds responded on a professional basis. Some 40% responded on behalf of an organisation or group.  

Respondents confirmed their current and/or expected uses of green jobs estimates, including:  

  • growth and investment 
  • policy or policies 
  • skills 
  • funding 
  • net zero greenhouse gas emissions 
  • ‘green’ transition over time 

The most popular definition among the three offered was the Green Jobs Taskforce definition; “Employment in an activity that directly contributes to - or indirectly supports - the achievement of the UK's net zero emissions target and other environmental goals, such as nature restoration and mitigation against climate risks.” This definition was preferred by 58% of respondents.  

The International Labour Organization definition was second favourite, ahead of the United Nations System of Environmental Economic Accounting, Environmental Goods and Services Sector definition. We also received comments highlighting the value of the three definitions offered, and similarities among them. 

We provided three options to frame a green jobs definition, which could be used to develop statistics. Most respondents (69%) ranked an occupation-based framing, as their favoured approach. For those who used one or more of the listed approaches, an industry-based approach was also regarded as advantageous, with a firm-based approach the least popular option of the three suggested. 

Almost half of respondents (49%) preferred geographic breakdowns of green jobs statistics from the three breakdowns offered (geographic, quality and demographic). However, users generally confirmed the merits of all three breakdowns. Respondents also offered suggestions for further breakdowns, with a clear demand for skills and educational attainment data, matched to green jobs statistics and data. 

Some respondents also commented on their wider interest in the environment (biodiversity, conservation, environmental protection, etc) and climate change.

For further details, please see our response summary document

We did

We committed to publishing this summary of responses to the engagement exercise by the end of 2022.  

We are now using the results of the exercise to work towards publishing a definition by the end of the first quarter of 2023. This will be followed by experimental statistics in 2023, and longer-term and regular outputs.  

We will produce a methodology for these estimates, outlining how they might best be used, and we will also outline how these statistics and data can be disaggregated to effectively meet different user needs.  

We will include an assessment of the strengths and limitations of definitions and estimates, along with guidance on potential sub-categories of green jobs. 

We will also be organising further opportunities for engagement and continued consultation with stakeholders and users. We are planning a follow up workshop on 31 January 2023. The aims of the workshop will include:  

  • discussion of the wording of an overall definition  
  • exploring how any definition can be divided into sub-definitions, and which are most important  
  • defining the detail of what is covered within any broad definition  
  • identifying areas where stakeholders can work together to further develop this topic  

If you would like to attend, please get in touch.  

We will also publish and communicate project updates similar to our previous work plans.  

We asked

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) consulted on the redesign of the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) from 26 May to 21 August 2022. 

The consultation sought to update CSEW users on the planned survey redesign and provide the opportunity for comment on both the redesign and survey content.

The consultation focused on two areas: 

  1. the methodological redesign of the CSEW including moving to a longitudinal panel survey design incorporating a multi-modal, wave approach 
  2. the content of the current survey instrument, how data is used and the opportunity to suggest changes  

For full details, please see our consultation response document.

 We would like to thank all respondents for taking part in the consultation. We appreciate the time taken to complete responses and we will use the information provided to design a CSEW that continues to meet data and information requirements about crimes committed against the general household population in England and Wales.

You said

The consultation received 58 responses from a range of stakeholders including individuals providing a personal view, individuals representing organisations and collective responses from organisations. These included: 

  • 22 responses from government, including local government and public bodies 
  • 13 responses from third sector, including charities and think tanks 
  • 12 responses from police bodies and institutions 
  • 8 responses from academia or research 
  • 3 responses from individuals responding in a personal capacity

 Methodological redesign of the CSEW 

We were pleased to find overwhelming support for the introduction of a longitudinal panel design. Benefits identified with the approach focused on the improved reliability of main estimates of crime, and increased data granularity offered by a larger sample. The ability to identify trends in victimisation and perceptions over time as well as new insights into the nature of crime, were just some of the advantages mentioned. As anticipated, concerns with the new approach included data comparability, consistency over time and attrition. 

Similarly, respondents were supportive of the move to a multimodal design citing potential improvements in data quality and sample representativeness. It was also understood that a multimodal design could reduce costs and enable the increase in sample size. Concern was expressed in relation to mode effects, data comparability, capturing complex crimes, confidentiality and safeguarding.  

Improvements to screener questions were welcomed by respondents, with the increase in data quality being valued above the potential impact on comparability. Respondents also supported harmonisation of the CSEW classification system with the Home Office Counting Rules (HOCR).  

There was opposition to the removal of questions on non-domestic stalking within the domestic abuse, sexual victimisation and stalking module. Concern surrounded the impact on the violence against women and girls (VAWG) evidence base and the implications of the resulting data gap for funding of support services and evidencing change to the criminal justice system (CJS).  

There was support for the Children’s Crime Survey for England and Wales (CCSEW) moving to a longitudinal panel design in the future. The key benefit identified by respondents was the analysis of trends in child victimisation, with sample attrition cited as the main concern. The move to a prevalence only measure of victimisation in the CCSEW received strong opposition with concern about the lack of incidence data creating an evidence gap.  

Content of the current survey 

Respondents’ comments on the content of the CSEW illustrated the value of each of the existing modules. Various new topic areas were suggested for inclusion, including hate crimes, online harms, the victim-offender overlap, modern slavery, terrorism and vulnerability to radicalisation. Further in-depth questions for existing modules were requested including gangs and personal security, VAWG and sexual assault and the re-introduction of the restorative justice module.  

We did

We have implemented a longitudinal panel design incorporating a multi-modal approach. Wave 1 of the new design commenced in October 2021 with the return of post-pandemic face-to-face interviewing. Wave 2 started more recently in October 2022, with the introduction of telephone interviews being offered to respondents taking part in the previous year. The continuation of face-to-face interviews at wave 1 will enable us to retain data comparability with previous years and we will evaluate the quality of data and develop robust methods before integrating data collected from wave 2.  

We have commenced a programme of research to develop online survey capability for the CSEW, starting with the screener and victimisation modules. Over time, we aim to supplement collections from wave 2 onwards using an online survey instrument and will consider how the design of a parallel run can ensure comparability and operational continuity for the survey. 

We share the concerns relating to the changing methodology, voiced by respondents to the consultation. We will conduct further research to engage with under represented groups to ensure sample representativeness and will consider methods to minimise attrition including the design of an optimal weighting scheme. We will conduct rigorous testing and monitoring of survey instruments including changes to questions and crime coding. We will consider various methods to ensure data comparability across waves and modes. We will keep users updated on all matters concerning data as the survey transformation progresses.  

Questions on domestic abuse have recently been re-developed to improve data accuracy. New domestic abuse questions will be published in spring 2023, alongside our evaluation plan and an update on the impact for other questions such as non-domestic stalking. We are also currently re-designing questions on the topic of adults who have experienced abuse in childhood. As a result of feedback from the consultation, we will consider additional themes including perpetrator demographics, the nature of victimisation and reporting of abuse. We are working with stakeholders and victims to ensure appropriateness and accuracy.  

We are currently working on an online self-completion module for the CCSEW, and the victimisation module will be re-developed alongside this. We understand concerns relating to a prevalence only measure and will continue to engage with stakeholders to understand data requirements. The collection of victimisation data online presents many challenges, so estimates produced from an online CCSEW will require robust evaluation.  

No large-scale changes will be made to the content of the survey instrument. The inclusion of new topics provides a challenge given the limited available space on the CSEW. However, consideration will be given to each of the new topic areas suggested and the expansion of existing modules, which may involve further input from stakeholders and data users. Developing our online survey capability will be an important step towards increasing capacity to collect additional data for new and existing topics on the CSEW. 

We asked

On 13 December 2021 the Office for National Statistics (ONS) published experimental gross value added (GVA) statistics at Middle layer Super Output Areas (MSOA) and higher geographies plus an accompanying article. The publication set Lower layer Super Output Area (LSOA) level data as the building blocks for higher level geographies.  

The ONS ran a consultation from 13 December 2021 to 7 March 2022 to seek users’ opinions on the experimental statistics. We asked users to help us understand:  

  1. How they used the experimental statistics 

  1. Whether they were going to access the building blocks dataset in the Secure Research Service (SRS) or not 

  1. How useful they found the accompanying article 

  1. Users’ suggestions about what we must do to improve the methods and procedures for producing subnational statistics 

  1. If anything was missing from the accompanying article that would be beneficial to see in the future 

  1. Users’ overall view of the experimental statistics 

  1. If users wanted statistics broken down by industry, and why 

  1. Whether they required any other industry breakdowns for their work 

  1. Other subnational data requirements they wanted us to know and/or pursue. 

  1. Other comments about the consultation 

The ONS is currently improving the availability of data at subnational level. It seeks to identify key areas of interest of different stakeholders with a view to build towards producing more (experimental) subnational statistics on a regular basis. Further, the ONS is working on a subnational data explorer facility, which is expected to mature into an online self-service platform, as discussed in the Government Statistical Service’s Subnational Data Strategy

You said

Professional and personal users of the data responded to the consultation. Of the respondents, 71% were using the data professionally in some capacity, and 56% of the users worked in Government, including local government and public bodies. 

Users were keen to access the experimental data with over 80% showing interest in working with the data. Whilst the disclosive nature of the results meant that the data had to be held in the Secure Research Services (SRS) creating a 50/50 split in the ability in those users to be able to access it. 

You told us that: 

  • disaggregating the gross value added (GVA) data to a subnational level helps to identify local trends in data over time, highlighting where economic activity is growing or declining 

  • the provision of more granular data (e.g. the building blocks) helps to meet specific stakeholder needs 

  • the presentation of data around the specific bespoke areas is clear and well structured 

  • that we clearly communicated how disaggregating GVA to a subnational level created issues in disclosure at LSOA, requiring us to hold this data within the SRS due to legal requirements and that you were happy with the restrictions set out to access this data. 

Some users requested the following: 

  • further data that can be compared to well-being economies/social systems alongside GVA and gross disposable household income (GDHI). 

  • MSOA/LSOA data for hours worked, income tax and income, and employment changes  

  • a user dashboard that allows users to visually ascertain data 

  • explore the possibility of integrating with 3rd party data providers 

 
Industry breakdowns  

We asked our stakeholders to tell us their views about producing industry breakdowns of GVA at lower levels of geography. Our earlier investigations had shown that industry breakdown at LSOA level is disclosive. There is reduced risk of disclosure at MSOA level, and this can be addressed by grouping some industries together.  

Table of industry breakdown 

Group 1 

 

Group 2 

 

Group 3 

 

Group 4 

Agriculture, forestry, and fishing 

 

Distribution 

 

Information and communication 

 

MN 

Business services activities 

BCDE 

Production 

 

Transport 

 

Financial and insurance activities 

 

OPQ 

Public administration; education; health 

Manufacturing 

 

Accommodation and food 

 

Real estate activities 

 

RST 

Other services and household activities 

Construction 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The consultation results show that some users:  

  • would prefer Group 1 to be broken down further, which is helpful for rural areas like Cumbria that consist of large agriculture and manufacturing sectors. Combining these two would mask important sector variations. 

  • prefer grouping consumer facing businesses (e.g. retail, hospitality) separately rather than combined with distribution and transport. This will be investigated for practicality and the risk of disclosure. 

  • suggested that education and health service are separated.  

Respondents to the consultation also made suggestions of what they want us to do in the future.  
Some of the suggestions or requests included: 

  •  GVA broken down by environmental impact to inform the net-zero agenda. 

  •  more frequent information on jobs and business change. For example, business demography quarterly below regional level – International Territorial Level (ITL) 3. ​ 

  • sectoral breakdown of HMRC’s Pay As You Earn (PAYE) Real Time Information (RTI) by full time equivalent job count at ITL 3 level, but local authority preferred. 

  • longer and up-to-date time series (less lagged) that will allow them to assess subnational impacts of Brexit.  

We did

We are working on several projects to improve availability of subnational statistics, including: 

  • looking to build a repeatable analytical pipeline for the ingestion and processing of data, in order to deliver future results in a timely manner 

  • updating the GVA estimates to 2020 

  • improving the apportionment methods that we use to breakdown GVA to lower levels of geography 

  • break down GDHI to lower levels of geography 

We asked

In October 2021, as part of its Review of Travel and Tourism Statistics, ONS launched a consultation on a proposed approach for the future measurement of travel and tourism statistics.

The consultation sought feedback on this proposed approach which will be used to inform the recommendations of the review, due to be published in Spring 2022.

For full details, please see the consultation document.

You said

The consultation received a total of 63 responses. These consisted of:

  • 25 responses from the government sector, including local government and public bodies
  • 9 responses from the business sector
  • 7 responses from the third sector, including charities and think tanks
  • 5 responses from the academia and research sector
  • 17 responses from other responses (including individuals)

Responses were submitted on behalf of individuals and organisations. Some respondents provided feedback based on the views of multiple organisations.

The majority of responses were supportive of the proposed approach for the measurement of travel and tourism statistics in the future and agreed that it would deliver statistics that meet the needs of users.

The feedback received highlighted user demand for more timely estimates as well as the availability of estimates with more detailed geographical breakdowns. It also flagged a need to minimise and explain any discontinuities introduced that would affect comparisons with previous years.

Since we sought user feedback at a relatively early stage of this development, consulting on a vision for these statistics rather than the statistical outputs, a large number of comments sought more detail. In particular, respondents would like more evidence that the proposed approach can deliver the level of quality required by users for the required range of variables.

We did

The feedback received through this consultation will be carefully considered and will inform the recommendations included in the final report on the Review of Travel and Tourism Statistics, due to be published in Spring 2022.

It is anticipated that a period of additional research will follow the conclusion of this review to further refine the proposed approach and allow an implementation plan to be developed. While the consultation responses will be important in defining this research, it is also our intention to continue to engage with users as further detail is available.

The document below captures the full breadth of responses we received in relation to this consultation, as well as our suggested actions resulting from them.

We asked

We, the Office for National Statistics (ONS), invited views on our proposals for the content design and release of Census 2021 outputs for England and Wales. In the proposals, we outlined how we plan to release census data and analysis in a phased approach.  

The consultation questions covered all phases of the release schedule. These phases are: 

  • phase one: population estimates cross tabulated by age and sex, household estimates and other univariate data published as part of topic summaries or area profiles 

  • phase two: multivariate data for the usual resident, household and communal establishment population bases 

  • phase three: alternative population bases, small populations, origin-destination and microdata 

  • beyond 2023: UK data and more complex analysis 

Gofynnon ni 

Gwnaethom ni, y Swyddfa Ystadegau Gwladol (SYG), wahodd sylwadau am ein cynigion ar gynllun cynnwys a rhyddhau allbynnau Cyfrifiad 2021 ar gyfer Cymru a Lloegr. Yn y cynigion, amlinellwyd sut rydym yn bwriadu rhyddhau data'r cyfrifiad a gwaith dadansoddi fesul tipyn.  

Roedd cwestiynau'r ymgynghoriad yn cwmpasu pob cam o'r amserlen datganiadau. Mae'r rhain yn cynnwys: 

  • cam un: amcangyfrifon o'r boblogaeth wedi'u croesdablu yn ôl oedran a rhyw, amcangyfrifon o gartrefi a data unamryweb eraill a gyhoeddwyd fel rhan o grynodebau o bynciau neu broffiliau ardal 

  • cam dau: data amlamrywedd ar gyfer seiliau poblogaeth preswylwyr arferol, cartrefi a sefydliadau cymunedol 

  • cam tri: seiliau poblogaeth amgen, poblogaethau bach, data tarddiad-cyrchfan a microdata 

  • y tu hwnt i 2023: data'r DU a gwaith dadansoddi mwy cymhleth 

You said

We received a total of 312 responses to the consultation. Of these, 240 were submitted by people in their professional capacity, including 211 on behalf of an organisation.

In general, respondents said they supported our proposals. However, they did request some specific changes and additions.

We’ve provided detail of your requests for phase one products in the Census 2021 outputs consultation response: part one (pdf, 634KB) document, in the “Phase one conclusions” sections.

We’ve provided detail of your requests for products from phase two, phase three and beyond 2023 in the Census 2021 outputs consultation response: part two (pdf, 835KB) document. These are in the sections titled:

  • “Statistical products: conclusions”
  • “Census during a period of change: conclusions”
  • “Paradata: conclusions”

In both these response documents, we also share the reasons you gave for the changes you’re requesting to our proposals.

You can find the original proposals you consulted on in the consultation document (pdf, 929KB)

 

Dywedoch chi  

Cawsom gyfanswm o 312 o ymatebion i'r ymgynghoriad. O'r rhain, roedd 240 gan bobl mewn rhinwedd broffesiynol, gan gynnwys 211 ar ran sefydliad.

Yn gyffredinol, dywedodd yr ymatebwyr eu bod o blaid ein cynigion. Fodd bynnag, gofynnwyd am rai newidiadau ac ychwanegiadau penodol.

Rydym wedi darparu manylion eich ceisiadau ar gyfer cynhyrchion cam un yn y ddogfen Ymateb i ymgynghoriad allbynnau Cyfrifiad 2021: rhan un (pdf, 634KB), yn yr adrannau “Casgliadau cam un”.

Rydym wedi darparu manylion eich ceisiadau ar gyfer cynhyrchion o gam dau, cam tri a thu hwnt i 2023 yn y ddogfen Ymateb i ymgynghoriad allbynnau Cyfrifiad 2021: rhan dau (pdf, 812KB).

Mae'r rhain yn yr adrannau o dan y teitlau:

  • “Cynhyrchion ystadegol: casgliadau”
  • “Y cyfrifiad yn ystod cyfnod o newid: casgliadau”
  • “Paradata: casgliadau”

Yn y ddwy ddogfen ymateb hyn, rydym hefyd yn rhannu eich rhesymau dros y newidiadau rydych yn gofyn amdanynt i'n cynigion.

Gallwch ddod o hyd i'r cynigion gwreiddiol y gwnaethoch ymgynghori arnynt yn y ddogfen ymgynghori (pdf, 1MB).

We did

We’ve been evaluating respondents’ feedback about our proposals. We reviewed each request to assess if a minimum strength of need was provided for us to consider making the requested change. We then grouped respondents’ requests under one of the following three categories. 

These categories are:

  1. not enough user need to consider changing the existing proposal
  2. enough user need, and we’re now assessing how feasible it is to change the proposal
  3. enough user need, and we’re able to change the proposal

Where we need to consider the feasibility of a request, we will consider factors such as statistical disclosure, data quality and cost. As such, users should not draw conclusions about our decisions for Census 2021 outputs based on these two consultation response reports alone.

We’ve provided a full list of our proposed changes to the phase one proposals, based on respondent feedback, in the Census 2021 outputs consultation response: part one (pdf, 634KB) document. These are listed in the “Summary of changes to phase one proposals” section.

We’ve provided a full list of our proposed changes to the proposals from phase two, phase three and beyond 2023, based on respondent feedback, in the Census 2021 outputs consultation response: part two (pdf, 835KB)  document. These are listed in the “Summary of changes to proposals” section.

Once our plans for each phase of the release schedule are finalised, we will publish the detail of those plans on the Census 2021 outputs webpages on the Office for National Statistics website.
 

Gwnelon ni 

Rydym wedi bod yn gwerthuso adborth yr ymatebwyr am ein cynigion. Gwnaethom adolygu pob cais i asesu a oedd angen digon cryf i ni ystyried gwneud y newid y gofynnwyd amdano. Yna cafodd ceisiadau'r ymatebwyr eu grwpio o dan un o'r tri chategori canlynol. 

Y categorïau hyn yw:

  1. dim digon o angen ymhlith defnyddwyr i ystyried newid y cynnig presennol
  2. digon o angen ymhlith defnyddwyr, ac rydym bellach yn asesu pa mor ymarferol yw newid y cynnig
  3. digon o angen ymhlith defnyddwyr, a gallwn newid y cynnig

Lle mae angen i ni ystyried ymarferoldeb cais, byddwn yn ystyried ffactorau megis datgelu ystadegol, ansawdd data a chost. Fel y cyfryw, ni ddylai defnyddwyr ddod i gasgliadau ynghylch ein penderfyniadau ar gyfer allbynnau Cyfrifiad 2021 yn seiliedig ar y ddau adroddiad ymateb i'r ymgynghoriad yn unig.

Rydym wedi darparu rhestr lawn o'n newidiadau arfaethedig i gynigion cam un, yn seiliedig ar adborth ymatebwyr, yn y ddogfen Ymateb i ymgynghoriad allbynnau Cyfrifiad 2021: rhan un (pdf, 634KB). Rhestrir y rhain yn yr adran “Crynodeb o'r newidiadau i gynigion cam un”.

Rydym wedi darparu rhestr lawn o'n newidiadau arfaethedig i'r cynigion o gam dau, cam tri a thu hwnt i 2023, yn seiliedig ar adborth yr ymatebwyr, yn y ddogfen Ymateb i ymgynghoriad allbynnau Cyfrifiad 2021: rhan dau (pdf, 812KB).  Rhestrir y rhain yn yr adran “Crynodeb o'r newidiadau i gynigion”.

Unwaith y bydd gennym fersiwn derfynol ein cynlluniau ar gyfer pob cam o'r amserlen datganiadau, byddwn yn cyhoeddi manylion y cynlluniau hynny ar dudalennau gwe allbynnau Cyfrifiad 2021 ar wefan y Swyddfa Ystadegau Gwladol.

 

We asked

The ONS is assessing the feasibility of a survey measuring the current prevalence of child abuse in the UK. We published an article in January 2021 outlining our findings to date.

We are currently in phase one of the project, which aims to establish whether there is enough evidence to support carrying out a pilot survey (phase two).

As part of this, we consulted with users to understand:

  • the need for improved statistics to understand the prevalence and nature of child abuse in the UK
  • the impact of not having this data
  • whether the proposed survey includes the elements that users feel are important and would meet their needs
  • any other important considerations that should be explored in our research going forward

You said

We received 91 responses to the consultation. Nearly half (44%) worked with or represented children or young people and 11% were decision or policy makers in national or local government.

Overall, there was strong support to take this work forward. Responses demonstrated the importance of survey data for designing strategies to prevent and respond to child abuse, developing and providing relevant services, and raising awareness of abuse.

You told us it’s important that;

  • a survey includes all children, particularly, those with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and who are home schooled
  • a survey covers the whole of the UK and includes young people aged 16 to 25 years
  • a survey provides appropriate support and takes proportionate safeguarding action
  • schools are prepared and able to effectively handle the possible impacts a survey could have
  • the limitations of a survey are clearly communicated alongside the data produced

We did

We will undertake qualitative research with:

  • children and young adults with experiences of abuse and parents of children with experiences of abuse, to hear their voices
  • headteachers, special educational needs coordinators and safeguarding leads in schools to understand how a survey could be carried out in schools and how children and young adults with SEND could be included
  • child protection leads working in local authority children’s social care services to understand how appropriate support and safeguarding could be ensured, and how home-schooled children could be included

We will also:

  • carry out further research to understand how all UK countries can be included and how robust data for each of these can be achieved
  • carry out further research to understand how young people aged 16 to 25 years can be included
  • continue to engage with key stakeholders to understand how a survey could be integrated into schools
  • continue to work with stakeholders, such as support organisations and the National Statistician’s Data Ethics Advisory Committee (NSDEC), to ensure any research is conducted in a sensitive and appropriate manner
  • publish a progress update this winter, providing the qualitative research is completed, which will summarise the findings from further work, our conclusion to phase one, and outline our next steps

We asked

The UK Statistics Authority/ONS Inclusive Data Consultation was open to the public from 5 January to 26 March 2021 (12 weeks). The purpose aligned with the UKSA strategy, Statistics for the Public Good, and supported the work of the Inclusive Data Taskforce to ensure that: “…our statistics, [analysis and publications] reflect the experiences of everyone in our society so that everyone counts, and is counted, and no one is forgotten.” (Statistics for the Public Good, 2020).

 

We consulted to gain views on what was needed to improve inclusivity of UK data and evidence, where the gaps are or where data and evidence are currently lacking or partial (topics, quality), and where further work is needed. We also sought views on where to make improvements and what is currently working well.

You said

The consultation received 185 total responses. These consisted of:

  • 100 responses from individuals
  • 83 responses from organisations
  • 2 responses did not identify whether they were an individual or an organisation.

Of the responses received from organisations, ‘Charity and voluntary sector’ organisations provided the majority, 32 responses (38.6%). A further 14 responses (16.9%) were from ‘Local authority’ organisations and 11 (13.3%) were from ‘Academic/research’ organisations. There were 8 responses (9.6%) from ‘Government departments’ and 6 responses (7.2%) from ‘Public body’ organisations. Other organisations that responded included campaigning/lobby groups, unions, IT professionals, engineering/design, education, health and social care. 

We did

The findings from this consultation have been used alongside other evidence gathered to inform the recommendations of the Inclusive Data Taskforce on improving the UK’s inclusive data holdings and infrastructure.

The recommendations, including a full analysis of responses received, can be found here.

We asked

In December 2020, ONS released the provisional, or 'beta' version of a new Health Index for England. The release provides an illustrative presentation of what this new statistic could look like and how it could enable new analysis.

Alongside the publication, ONS launched a 12-week consultation asking for feedback on the provisional ‘beta’ version of the Health Index. ONS will use the feedback gained to develop the Health Index into a finalised product.

You said

The consultation received 131 total responses. These consisted of:

  • 46 questionnaire responses from the public
  • 42 questionnaire responses from analysts
  • 8 questionnaire responses from government decision-makers
  • 14 questionnaire responses from other respondents
  • 21 responses via email

Responses were submitted on behalf of individuals and organisations. Some respondents provided feedback based on the views of multiple organisations.

The majority of responses were supportive of both the concept of a Health Index in general, and the ONS’s beta version as a means of achieving that concept.

Many made suggestions for improving the Health Index’s content, methodology and presentation – further detail of which can be found in the consultation response.

We did

ONS will carefully consider the suggestions put forward with its expert advisory group.

Amendments which can be acted upon in the short term will be incorporated into the next version of the Health Index, to be released later in 2021. Others will inform the development the Health Index in the longer term.

We asked

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) invited views on our proposed Census 2021 Output Geography Policy, and our plans for geography products and services. The consultation took place from 5 November 2020 to 18 December 2020.

The policy largely focuses on our maintenance plans for small area geographies – Output Areas (OAs), Lower Layer Super Output Areas (LSOAs) and Middle Layer Super Output Areas (MSOAs). We provided detail for each of the proposed publicly available geography products and services, including digital boundaries, look-up files and statistical products.

We consulted with users to:

  • obtain feedback on all aspects of Census 2021 Output Geography Policy
  • specifically understand whether they supported our recommendation for a refinement to the OA best-fit approach for producing ward and parish census statistics
  • provide a detailed list of the geography products we intend to make available
  • understand any user interest in a comparable UK small area geography

You said

We received 132 responses to the consultation. Of these, 69 respondents (52%) answered on behalf of an organisation and 63 respondents (48%) answered as an individual.

All respondents stated the sector in which they worked, with a small number stating two or more sectors (which accounts for the differences in totals). There were 20 respondents (14%) who did not work in a sector listed, who were most typically retired.

Overall, 84% of users supported our recommendation set out in the consultation. We recommend continuing to publish ward and parish outputs using an OA best-fit approach, with additional alignment of some OA boundaries to wards and parish boundaries.

Users also told us that:

  • they generally support our intention to keep the Census 2021 Output Geography Policy relatively unchanged from the existing policy
  • they recognised the need to maintain a balance between updating statistical geographies to reflect change and preserve comparability with historical data
  • they had concerns that realignment of OAs to ward boundaries could be quickly undone if these ward boundaries were to undergo further change in the future  
  • clear supporting information was vital to inform users of any boundary changes
  • they support our proposed publicly available products and provided detail of additional products that would help their work
  • they partly support a comparable UK small area geography – around half voiced their support, with the remainder not having a specific requirement

We did

We intend to:

  • proceed with our proposed Census 2021 Output Geography Policy
  • implement our recommendation for a refinement to the OA best-fit approach for producing ward and parish census statistics
  • consider boundary changes and reflect the geographies in place at the time of the release of census outputs
  • consider what supporting information we can produce to inform users of boundary changes
  • keep users informed about plans to release census outputs for 1 km grid squares
  • produce OA, LSOA and MSOA look-up files to assist users in identifying if current geographies are comparable from 2011 to 2021
  • consider any additional requirements mentioned by users  
  • discuss options for producing a comparable UK small area geography for Scotland and Northern Ireland with the devolved administrations

We asked

ONS currently produces population estimates by marital status and living arrangements for England and Wales. Where possible an estimate of the population who are in a marriage between same-sex couples is provided separately. This is currently a number, not available by age or sex because of very small estimates of this population. Throughout the majority of the publication the population who are in a marriage between opposite-sex couples and same-sex couples are presented together as a total married population.

ONS were keen to learn whether the provision of a separate estimate of the population who are in a marriage between same-sex couples is meeting user need, allowing us to gain a better understanding of who uses these estimates and how they are being used.

The consultation questions were specifically aimed at gathering user need about the number (stock) of people by marital status living in England and Wales not the number of marriages being formed in England and Wales (flow), which ONS has asked users about in the past.

You said

We are grateful to everyone who took time to respond to the consultation. There were a total of 354 responses received from a variety of organisations and individuals that monitor, formulate or influence policy and plan services both at the national and local level. We also received responses from academics, charities and religious groups. A full list of organisations that responded can be found in Annex A. The feedback we received is very valuable to us and has helped us to better understand our users and their data requirements.

The key points to note from the responses to the consultation are:

  • 99.4% of respondents require estimates of the population who are married to be presented separately for same-sex couples and for opposite-sex couples.
  • The majority (71.8%) of responses came from individuals; the next largest group of responses (16.1%) came from religious or church groups.
  • Respondents require estimates of the married population to be separate to allow:
    • Analysis of family and relationship trends and diversity
    • Calculation of divorce rates which allows analysis of the differences in length of marriage
    • Equalities monitoring
    • Provision of a comprehensive picture of the resident population
    • Informed service provision
    • Monitoring of physical/ mental health and wellbeing outcomes
    • Support of evidence based policy making
    • Understanding of the impact and effect of the introduction of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013
    • Historical and international comparisons of the population who are in a marriage between opposite sex couples.   

We did

As a result of this consultation, we:

  • Have a better understanding of user need which allows us to make informed decisions about marital status data collection in the future.
  • Will continue to provide separate estimates of the population who are in a marriage between same-sex couples and in a marriage between opposite-sex couples where possible.
  • Will continue to monitor these data to see whether we can provide more detailed estimates in the future which could be of more use to our users.

We asked

Our aim was to gain a better understanding of price discrimination for export of services and how prices could be affected by exchange rates.

You said

Information received varied across service sectors, consistent themes were identified.

We did

Feedback obtained will be used to assist development of the Services Producer Price Index (SPPI).

We asked

Whether you found the publications useful, the methodology appropriate, and whether you wanted the outputs to continue in future

You said

That the new output was very welcome, the methodology was basically suitable but could use a few additions, and that it should continue to be developed

We did

Started planning for the next round of outputs in 2018, and set our priorities for next stages of development work

We asked

To enable ONS to publish more detailed birth statistics for England and Wales than currently available, whilst also improving timeliness, we proposed to make explorable datasets for live births available in NOMIS from the 2017 data year. Consequential changes were also proposed to our annual publication tables, and some new tables were outlined. We consulted users with these proposals to ensure birth statistics continue to meet user needs as much as possible. 

You said

There were a total of 15 responses received from a variety of organisations that monitor, formulate or influence policy and plan services both at the national and local level. We also received responses from academics, charities and a private company.
 
The key points to note from the responses to the consultation are:
 
  • Respondents welcomed detailed birth statistics being made available as explorable datasets in NOMIS; however some were concerned about locating particular birth statistics in the future. 
  • Four respondents were concerned over plans to combine i) births to married couples with births to cohabiting couples and ii) sole registered births with births jointly registered by parents who live at different addresses. They considered the distinction between these groups important for both demographers and policy makers interested in changing family forms and living arrangements. 
  • Three respondents requested that much more detailed data be made available as explorable datasets; for example live births by single year of age of mother and father with other characteristics available for cross tabulation, or the addition of parity and exact multiplicity.
  • One respondent noted that they would like to have parents’ occupation coded on 100% of live births, currently only 10% are coded.
  • Three respondents noted that they used tables which were proposed to be discontinued.

We did

As a result of this consultation, we will take the following actions:
 
  • Make available the five explorable datasets on NOMIS , outlined in Annex B of our Response to the ONS consultation on proposed changes to birth statistics. We intend to make 2017 data publicly available in NOMIS in July or August 2018.
  • Make changes to our published tables as outlined in Annex C of our Response to the ONS consultation on proposed changes to birth statistics. These changes are based on those originally proposed in our consultation but take account of the responses we received. 

We asked

We asked for your views on our assessment of estimating the number of rooms and bedrooms in the 2021 Census using Valuation Office Agency (VOA) data.

We wanted to understand how changing to an administrative data source to estimate number of rooms and bedrooms would affect users of this data.

You said

We received 34 complete responses to the consultation from a range of local authorities, government departments, academics and agencies.

The main feedback in relation to number of rooms was:

  • six respondents indicated that using VOA data would have a negative impact on their work
  • nine respondents indicated using VOA data would have a positive impact on their work
  • 12 respondents didn’t indicate an impact either way

The main feedback in relation to number of bedrooms was:

  • nine respondents indicated that using VOA data to estimate number of bedrooms would have a negative impact on their work
  • 10 respondents indicated using VOA data to estimate number of bedrooms would have a positive impact on their work
  • 16 respondents didn’t indicate an impact either way

Some users highlighted areas for further research. These included investigating:

  • the 34% increase in overcrowding (bedrooms) estimates from VOA data compared to using census data
  • how frequently the VOA dataset is updated 

We did

We have looked at:

  • the differences between VOA and 2011 Census for occupancy rating (bedrooms) at local authority level and found the difference varies across the country