GKB: Geodemographics Knowledge Base
 

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.

The UK Statistics Authority set up the Beyond 2011 Programme in April 2011 to investigate and assess alternative options for producing the population and socio-demographic data required by users in England and Wales. This work will include testing models for the use of administrative and survey data as an alternative to the UK's traditional census approach. Beyond 2011 will provide recommendations to Parliament in 2014.

2011 Census

Census statistics help paint a picture of the nation and how we live. They provide a detailed snapshot of the population and its characteristics, and underpin funding allocation to provide public services. The population of England & Wales on Census Day, 27 March 2011, was 56,075,912.

2011 Census Third Release

ONS have released the first 42 Detailed Characteristic tables as part of release 3. These tables are available via the NOMIS website. The details of these 42 tables can be found on the ONS website. Following this release, publication will continue with Detailed Characteristics, which are planned to be completed during the summer. This will be followed by the release of Local Characteristics, planned to start in August 2013. ONS Census Customer Services are now accepting requests for univariate commissioned tables and will start to take requests for multivariate tables from September 2013. Charges will be for this service will be agreed prior to work commencing, based on the published price list here. Requests should be made through ONS Census Customer Services at: Census.CustomerServices@ons.gsi.gov.uk

2011 Census: Key and Quick Statistics tables for the United Kingdom now available from Nomis

The Key and Quick Statistics tables for the United Kingdom bring together data from the 2011 Censuses conducted in England and Wales, in Scotland, and in Northern Ireland, to provide UK harmonised data for areas throughout the United Kingdom. These UK tables were released by ONS in 2014 as downloadable files, and have now been added to the wide range of Census data available through nomis

2021 Census Consultations

The investment of time and resources in a national census, or similar system of data collection, can only be justified if the results are accessible to users and meet their needs. This involves wide consultation in accordance with the principles and practices set out in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics. This is the home page for consultations on the 2021 Census.

Beyond 2011 - User Statements

Following on from ONS' Beyond 2011 benefits realisation consultation process, they have put together the information they have received so far into a series of ‘User Statements’. They are requesting your help to make these as comprehensive as possible in order to build the case for the future of this type of statistics. Visit the website for more information on how to provide comment on these user statements.

Beyond 2011 Consultation - CGG and MRS Response

The Census and Geodemographics Group and MRS have submitted a joint response to the ONS Beyond 2011 Consultation.Please view the completed consultation questionnaire on the MRS website.

Beyond 2011 Programme: new publications for February 2013

ONS have released a series of papers by the Beyond 2011 Programme on the research work undertaken over the past 6 months. These are intended to provide much more about the approach they are taking to evaluate the options and what the next steps are. Further papers are to be released in May and July 2013. Visit the link below for access to these papers:

Beyond 2011 Programme: new publications for February 2013

ONS have released a series of papers by the Beyond 2011 Programme on the research work undertaken over the past 6 months. These are intended to provide much more about the approach they are taking to evaluate the options and what the next steps are. Further papers are to be released in May and July 2013. Visit the link below for access to these papers:

Beyond 2011 Research Conference

As part of Beyond 2011's external quality assurance process, ONS will be holding a research conference in collaboration with the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the British Society for Population Studies (BSPS). This will take place on Tuesday 30th April and Wednesday 1st May at the University of Southampton. Booking for this event is now open - places are limited and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. To reserve your place, please go to the following link:

Beyond 2011 User Requirements Consultation

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.

ONS has launched a public consultation which will provide a first opportunity for users to contribute to the discussion and help inform this important work. The views expressed in response to this consultation will be critical in determining how ONS develop the assessment criteria that will be used to judge the different options being considered.

This consultation will be open for 14 weeks from 17 October 2011 to 20 January 2012. The consultation document and online questionnaire are available online via the link below. ONS will also be running a series of workshops during November to support this consultation. Workshops are planned for the following dates and locations:


03 November 2011 – Leeds
        08 November 2011 – Cardiff
        14 November 2011 – London – FULLY BOOKED
        25 November 2011 – London (extra event added) If you wish to attend one of these workshops email beyond2011@ons.gov.uk stating the date and location you would like to attend and the organisation, if any, you will be representing.

Beyond 2011: Final Options Report

This paper from ONS details the recommendations for the 2021 census: • An online census of all households and communal establishments in England and Wales in 2021 as a modern successor to the traditional, paper-based decennial census. ONS recognises that special care would need to be taken to support those who are unable to complete the census online. • Increased use of administrative data and surveys in order to enhance the statistics from the 2021 Census and improve annual statistics between censuses http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/about-ons/who-ons-are/programmes-and-projects/beyond-2011/reports-and-publications/methods-and-policies-reports/beyond-2011--final-options-report.pdf

Beyond 2011: National Records of Scotland (NRS) Consultation

The census currently provides the basis for population and socio-demographic statistics in Scotland, but it is becoming increasingly challenging and expensive to conduct. The National Records of Scotland is trying to better understand user needs for population and socio-demographic information and how these future needs might be met. Users are kindly requested to complete an online survey. Please visit the website below for access to the survey. The consultation closes on 9th June 2013

Beyond 2011: National Records of Scotland (NRS) Consultation

The census currently provides the basis for population and socio-demographic statistics in Scotland, but it is becoming increasingly challenging and expensive to conduct. The National Records of Scotland is trying to better understand user needs for population and socio-demographic information and how these future needs might be met. Users are kindly requested to complete an online survey. Please visit the website below for access to the survey. The consultation closes on 9th June 2013

Beyond the 2011 Census in the United Kingdom: with an international perspective

The recent census in the UK, taken in March 2011, may also have been our last – since the Office for National Statistics has announced that it intends to explore alternative more cost-effective options for ‘census taking’ in the future. In this paper, we consider what the options may be, based on approaches and experiences from other countries, and assess their implications for users.

Census 2011: Identity, language and religion in Scotland

The statistics published on 21st March 2014 by the Registrar General for Scotland on the Scotland's Census website, present further details from the 2011 Census in Scotland on Ethnicity, Identity, Language and Religion, from national to local level.

Census consultation: Future provision of population statistics

A three month public consultation on the census and future provision of population statistics in England and Wales is launched today (23rd Sept) by the Office for National Statistics (ONS). After each census, ONS reviews the future needs for information about the population and housing in England and Wales, and how these needs might be met.  The 2011 Census successfully provided population statistics that will be used for the next decade by planners, policy makers and researchers across the public and private sectors. Our population is changing rapidly, and the need to understand these changes will continue.  The Office for National Statistics' (ONS) Beyond 2011 programme is currently reviewing these needs, and how they might best be met in future. Improvements in technology and in government data sources offer opportunities to either modernise the existing census process, or to develop an alternative census method that reuses existing data already held within government.  Their research has resulted in two approaches for taking the census in future:   %u2022 a census once a decade, like that conducted in 2011, but primarily online   %u2022 a census using existing government data and compulsory annual surveys.  Both approaches would provide annual statistics about the size of the population, nationally and for local authorities. A census using existing data and surveys would provide more statistics about the characteristics of the population every year. An online census would provide more detailed statistics once a decade.  The consultation document describes these approaches, their strengths and weaknesses and the different types of information they could provide. No decision has yet been made, and ONS welcomes your views. Please respond using the online questionnaire.

Census-taking in the United Kingdom: 2011 and beyond - Barry Leventhal, Journal of Direct, Data and Digital Marketing Practice Vol. 14 No. 3 (published 31st March 2013)

This paper looks back at the 2011 Census, and then looks forward at options for the future. The progress of the ONS Beyond 2011 programme is reviewed, at the half-way point in its development phase, and the author comments on the likely implications for users in research and marketing.

Census-taking in the United Kingdom: 2011 and beyond - Barry Leventhal, Journal of Direct, Data and Digital Marketing Practice Vol. 14 No. 3 (published 31st March 2013)

This paper looks back at the 2011 Census, and then looks forward at options for the future. The progress of the ONS Beyond 2011 programme is reviewed, at the half-way point in its development phase, and the author comments on the likely implications for users in research and marketing. Visit this page for more information on the Census

General Register Office for Scotland – Beyond 2011 Project

The Beyond 2011 project has been set up to research viable alternative options to the traditional census. Its aim is to deliver recommendations for providing timely and cost-effective population and socio-demographic statistics that meet user needs. Further information about the project including detail on the available options and stakeholder engagement activities can be accessed on the website at:

Information Collected by Commercial Companies: What Might Be of Value to ONS?

The recent census in the UK, taken in March 2011, may also have been our last – since the Office for National Statistics has announced that it intends to explore alternative more cost-effective options for ‘census taking’ in the future. In this paper, we consider what the options may be, based on approaches and experiences from other countries, and assess their implications for users. We start by reminding ourselves about the value of the census and the strengths and weaknesses of the current approach. We then identify the principal methods being followed in other countries, together with their advantages and disadvantages. This leads us to review methodological work in the UK, building up to the current ‘Beyond 2011’ ONS project. We focus on administrative records as a possible way of removing the need for a full population survey. Finally, we assess the options and discuss the implications for users in market research.

Jane Frost comments on Times article

With the release of the first 2011 Census results this week there has inevitably been plenty of surrounding press coverage. The Times published an article on 17th July titled “Population rises 4m in decade as immigration drives boom” which also discussed the Government’s review of the Census Beyond 2011 project. Jane Frost, Chief Executive Officer, The Market Research Society wrote to the editor of The Times and her statement below was published in today’s article (18th July) “The Census in our increasingly crowded land”.Sir, The release of the first set of Census data raised questions about its long-term future (“Population rises 4m in decade as immigration drives boom”, July 17). The Government’s review into the Census beyond 2011 should not result in the baby being thrown out with the bath water; it must continue in 2021 while a proven alternative is identified. Our Census is an authoritative and accurate source of data on which reliable decisions are made by both the private and public sector. It is these good, reliable decisions that will help organisations thrive and support economic growth and wellbeing in the current climate. Without a robust replacement we risk poor decisions and a society that is inadequately informed about excluded yet significant groups which don’t show up on the usual radar.

Jane Frost comments on Times article

With the release of the first 2011 Census results this week there has inevitably been plenty of surrounding press coverage. The Times published an article on 17th July titled “Population rises 4m in decade as immigration drives boom” which also discussed the Government’s review of the Census Beyond 2011 project. Jane Frost, Chief Executive Officer, The Market Research Society wrote to the editor of The Times and her statement below was published in today’s article (18th July) “The Census in our increasingly crowded land”.Sir, The release of the first set of Census data raised questions about its long-term future (“Population rises 4m in decade as immigration drives boom”, July 17). The Government’s review into the Census beyond 2011 should not result in the baby being thrown out with the bath water; it must continue in 2021 while a proven alternative is identified. Our Census is an authoritative and accurate source of data on which reliable decisions are made by both the private and public sector. It is these good, reliable decisions that will help organisations thrive and support economic growth and wellbeing in the current climate. Without a robust replacement we risk poor decisions and a society that is inadequately informed about excluded yet significant groups which don’t show up on the usual radar.

New ONS website launched

The Office for National Statistics is the UK's largest independent producer of official statistics, covering the UK's economy, society and population, including the UK Census. It is the recognised UK National Statistical Institute.The new complete redesigned ONS website has been launched, following extensive feedback from the July 2015 Beta version. The search and navigation tools have been significantly improved, as has the overall performance and general appearance. Nearly 150,000 redirects enable users to find existing content and much of the older content that has been moved to the National ArchivesONS is retaining a full time team to regularly maintain and enhance the website. More about development of the new website is available in the Digital Publishing Blog.

ONS - Beyond 2011 Programme

These pages provide a summary of the work of the Beyond 2011 Programme and details of how to contribute to it. The pages will be kept up to date to provide details of progress and plans as they develop. Included is: Background to Beyond 2011, What are the Options?, News and Events, Reports and Publications, Contribute to Beyond 2011: Consultation, Frequently Asked Questions on Beyond 2011 and Contact Beyond 2011 Email beyond2011@ons.gsi.gov.uk if you would like  ONS to keep you informed on developments as they occur through their Newsletter

ONS - Beyond 2011- Report on results of Consultation

This consultation, which ran for 14 weeks from 17th October 2011 to 20th January 2012, provided a first opportunity for users to contribute to the discussion and help inform this important work. The report on the results of the consultation is now available online:

ONS Beyond 2011 User Requirements Consultation Update

The Beyond 2011 User Requirements consultation closed on 20th January. More than 300 responses to the consultation were received and more than 200 people attended the workshops.
Work on analysing the consultation responses and the feedback from the workshops is now being carried out. These will feed into a consultation report which will be published in the spring, along with plans of how the consultation findings will be taken forward.
More immediately, there are plans to release a quarterly Beyond 2011 newsletter, starting in April this year. The newsletter will provide a regular update on progress and links to research and discussion papers as they are published. The first edition will provide information on plans and the start of the discussion on the criteria that will be used to evaluate the options. Your views on this will be welcomed by ONS, as it is important that there is a clear understanding of how the options will be assessed and of the rules that will inform the final recommendations.
The ONS Beyond 2011 web pages are being reviewed over the coming weeks and users are advised to check back there for updates:
http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/about-ons/what-we-do/programmes---projects/beyond-2011/index.html
For further information or for any queries, the Beyond 2011 email address is: beyond2011@ons.gov.uk
Learn the solution of the Rubiks Cube and measure your solution times with the online timer.

ONS Survey on benefits gained from Census data

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) would like to evaluate the benefits to the commercial sector gained from census data and develop the case for continued production of the small area data. They are keen to hear from anybody working in the commercial sector about their use of census data. The survey is available for completion online www.surveymonkey.com/s/DJ5RBGB or alternatively you can complete it via a Word document, available from the benefits realisation team. If you have any comments on the survey or if you would like to tell ONS about your use of census data in an alternative way, please get in touch with the 2011 Census benefits realisation team at: benefits.realisation@ons.gsi.gov.uk If you or your company has derived benefit from analysing census data, then please ensure you complete the survey or contact the benefits realisation team.

Opportunity to engage with the Beyond 2011 programme

Ensure that your organisation's views and needs are heard. The Beyond 2011 (B2011) programme was initiated by the National Records of Scotland in 2011 to propose viable alternative options to the traditional census. The census has long been the benchmark for capturing a comprehensive, consolidated and accurate snapshot of the population. However, various sources indicate that the current system of providing population and key socio-demographic statistics is no longer meeting all user needs. The B2011 programme will produce an options paper for ministers, describing the work that has been completed in the research phase and detailing the options for the next phases. As part of this research phase, they need to determine what the user requirements are for producing small area population and socio-demographic statistics and they are planning a series of workshops in Edinburgh on the 19th and 21st Feb. For more information please visit: http://www.gro-scotland.gov.uk/beyond-2011/consultations-events/events/index.html During the workshops you will have the opportunity to express your views on the B2011 programme. If you wish to attend please send an email to Beyond2011@gro-scotland.gsi.gov.uk, indicating the day you wish to attend and the session, as there are morning and afternoon sessions for both days. In addition they are using a forum of discussion in the The Knowledge Hub (formerly known as Communities of Practice) to promote Beyond 2011 engagement activities as well as publication notifications. If you would like to sign-up to the Beyond 2011 portal then please follow the link below: https://knowledgehub.local.gov.uk/group/scottishbeyond2011programmebeyond2011scotland

Opportunity to engage with the Beyond 2011 programme

Ensure that your organisation's views and needs are heard. The Beyond 2011 (B2011) programme was initiated by the National Records of Scotland in 2011 to propose viable alternative options to the traditional census. The census has long been the benchmark for capturing a comprehensive, consolidated and accurate snapshot of the population. However, various sources indicate that the current system of providing population and key socio-demographic statistics is no longer meeting all user needs. The B2011 programme will produce an options paper for ministers, describing the work that has been completed in the research phase and detailing the options for the next phases. As part of this research phase, they need to determine what the user requirements are for producing small area population and socio-demographic statistics and they are planning a series of workshops in Edinburgh on the 19th and 21st Feb. For more information please visit: http://www.gro-scotland.gov.uk/beyond-2011/consultations-events/events/index.html During the workshops you will have the opportunity to express your views on the B2011 programme. If you wish to attend please send an email to Beyond2011@gro-scotland.gsi.gov.uk, indicating the day you wish to attend and the session, as there are morning and afternoon sessions for both days. In addition they are using a forum of discussion in the The Knowledge Hub (formerly known as Communities of Practice) to promote Beyond 2011 engagement activities as well as publication notifications. If you would like to sign-up to the Beyond 2011 portal then please follow the link below: https://knowledgehub.local.gov.uk/group/scottishbeyond2011programmebeyond2011scotland

Planning the 2021 Census event - 22 July 2-5pm, Royal Statistical Society

Are you a user of Census data? Or do you think Census data could be useful to you? On 22 July 2-5pm, the Royal Statistical Society is hosting an event 'Planning the 2021 Census: Recent Developments', at which ONS representatives and Chris Skinner (LSE) will talk about the work so far on the next Census. It will include talks on the current topic consultation and the use of administrative data. The event provides the opportunity to be involved in the planning early on, and consider what you need from the next Census outputs.
If you'd like to attend, email events@rss.org.uk to book your place.

Publication of 2011 Census second address estimates for local authorities

ONS have published the number of people with second addresses in local authorities in England and Wales from the 2011 Census. This release provides the number of usual residents in England and Wales who reported having a second address outside of the local authority in which they were usually resident. The release includes two separate tables which provide, down to local authority level: - the number of people who spend more than 30 days a year at a second address in a local authority where they do not usually live, and - the number of people usually resident in each local authority who had a second address elsewhere.  Two further tables provide similar figures at regional level.  The data can be accessed from here:

Research Strategy published for the Beyond 2011 Programme

This January 2015 paper sets out the research strategy and questions for the design and prototyping phase of the Beyond 2011 programme in 2015 and 2016, a high-level testing strategy for this period, and the main testing phase of the programme in 2017.

Scotland's Census 2021 – Topic Consultation Report

The Registrar General for Scotland has published Scotland's Census 2021 – Topic Consultation Report on 15 August 2016 and it is available from the Scotland's Census website. The success of the 2021 census relies on a comprehensive understanding of user needs and concerns, as well as the support and participation of the general public. 

Scotland’s Census 2021 – Topic Consultation

National Records of Scotland (NRS) on behalf of the Registrar General for Scotland, is responsible for conducting a census in Scotland. Planning has begun for Scotland's Census 2021 and will build on the success of the Census in 2011. It will be designed and managed in Scotland, to best meet the needs of its users. As part of this, National Records Scotland, are now asking their users for their views on the topics to be included on the 2021 Census questionnaire. Please see below to share your views:  http://www.scotlandscensus.gov.uk/consultation-2021

Please see below to view news and events about the Census:

Scotland’s Census Website

Please see the official website of National Records Scotland. This organisation is planning the 2021 Census in Scotland. 

The 2021 Census – Initial view on content for England and Wales

This paper provides the initial view of the Office for National Statistics (ONS) on the content of the 2021 Census questionnaire for England and Wales. It forms the starting point of consultation on the topics and sub-topics to be included. The initial view is informed by evaluation of the success of the 2011 topics and questions, as well as evidence about user requirements from recent consultations for Beyond 2011. It is also informed by ONS's current understanding of affordability and by its aspirations for using administrative data.

The future of small area statistics - Independent Beyond 2011 Working Group

The Working Group has been established to provide an informed and collective response to the potential discontinuation of the conventional census being currently considered by ONS which would have profound implications for the future availability of data for small areas, and thus for geodemography.

Too soon to scrap the Census

This report is on the inquiry by House of Commons Public Administration Select Committee (PASC) into the future of the census. It follows the publication by ONS of the recommendations of the National Statistician after a national consultation. The Inquiry agrees that the decennial census should be kept.
Witnesses emphasised, among other things, the great financial benefits to business provided by census data and these have been quantified. The Committee recommends that the ONS now scope and set out a more ambitious vision for the creative and full use of administrative data to provide rich and valuable population statistics, which could potentially be more accurate and up-to-date than the census, and cover new topics. It also recommends that the Government now embark upon a public information campaign to communicate the benefits of increased data sharing for statistical purposes, and the safeguards which will be in place to protect people’s personal information and privacy. The report includes formal minutes of the proceedings.

Transformative Research Call

The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) is delighted to announce the 20 successful grants of the first Transformative Research Call, a pilot for 2012/2013.The call aims to provide a stimulus for genuinely transformative and groundbreaking research ideas at the frontiers of social sciences.

UNECE Expert Groupmeeting on International Censuses in Geneva

UNECE is one of five regional commissions of the United Nations. They recently held a UNECE Expert Group meeting on International Censuses in Geneva. Please find a link below to the papers and presentations as well as a  formal report summarising the main issues discussed.

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