ONS Beyond 2011 Consultation

The dynamic nature of population change, advances in information technology, cost constraints and demand for more frequent and more detailed statistics are driving changes in methods for the provision of population and socio-demographic data in the UK. This trend can be seen across many developed countries.

The Beyond 2011 Programme was formally established in April 2011 to investigate and assess alternative options for producing the population and socio-demographic data required by users in England and Wales.  The Beyond 2011 Programme will carry out a full assessment of all alternative approaches in order to allow the UK Statistics Authority to make a recommendation as to the best way forward to Parliament in 2014. This recommendation will be informed not only by an assessment of the statistical viability of the potential solutions, but also by a consideration of user requirements, public burden, costs and public acceptability. The outcomes will have implications for all population-based statistics in England and Wales and potentially, in the longer term, for the statistical system as a whole.

 This initial public consultation is only the start of a dialogue with central and local government, commercial organisations, academics, community organisations, special interest groups and other users that is planned to continue over the next two years. This consultation provides a first opportunity for users to contribute to the discussion and help inform this important work.

 The consultation questionnaire is designed to stimulate debate and obtain comments on the following key questions:

 What are users’ current requirements for data, and how are these requirements likely to change?

 What other data sources might be able to provide the required information about population characteristics?

How should we balance the potentially conflicting priorities of frequency, accuracy and geography?

This consultation will be open for 14 weeks from 17 October 2011 to 20 January 2012. A report on the outcomes will be published in spring 2012 and the results will feed into the evaluation of the statistical options.

If you would like to contribute to the Warwickshire Observatory’s response, please forward any comments to research@warwickshireobservatory.org or to respond to the questionnaire individually, complete the questionnaire online or use the attached template and return electronically to beyond2011@ons.gov.uk before 20th January 2012.

 Beyond 2011 User Requirements Consultation

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