Show Menu

Data Manifesto Royal Statical Society Cheat Sheet (DRAFT) by [deleted]

Data Manifesto Royal Statical Society

This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.

Introd­uction: Data for better policy­making

There is a great opport­unity for more efficient and effective policy­making if we use data to inform what we are doing. There are three things the government should do to improve data for policy­making:

Data to strengthen democracy and trust

Our democracy relies on the quality of data in the public domain, and the public’s trust in it. There are three things the government should do to improve data for democracy:
1. Ensure that data quality and data ethics are taken into account in decision making. The UK Statistics Authority should play a key role in ensuring official statistics are trustw­orthy and inform policy. Government should end the practice of pre-re­lease access whereby some people in government see statistics before the public. A Council for Data Ethics should proact­ively consider ethical challenges emerging from new data science develo­pments.
2. Citizens should have greater access to quality local data . The availa­bility of crime and accident data has shown local commun­ities are interested when the data is relevant to them. Central government should encourage greater public­ation of data at local level and build on good practice.
3. Private companies should be transp­arent about how they use data. Firms that actively collect data should enable scrutiny of their methods and their data policies. Private schools, hospitals, and other public services provided by private providers should adhere to the same data standards and transp­arency as those in the public sector

Data for better policy­making

1. Evidence must be taken more seriously in policy formul­ation and evalua­tion, and official statistics should be at the heart of policy debate. We should keep invest­igating what works in policy. Government should publish the data and evidence that underpin any new policies it announces.
2. Greater data sharing between government depart­ments for statistics and research purposes would provide opport­unities for a range of public services / policy areas ranging from ‘smart cities’ to better health­care. Privacy safeguards should be built into any sharing of personal data at the outset.
3. Politi­cians, policy­makers and other profes­sionals working in public services (such as regula­tor­s,t­eac­her­s,d­octors etc) should be given basic training in data handling and statistics to ensure they avoid making poor decisions which adversely affect citizens.

Data Manifesto

Data: the driver of prosperity

Our well being depends on economic prospe­rity, which in turn depends upon exploiting our investment in data, and on our skills as a society to understand and use data. There are four things the government should do to improve data
for prospe­rity:

1. The Government should uphold its commitment to increase investment in our science and research base, to keep pace with other leading scientific nations. Alongside this, the government must maintain the UK’s reputation as a destin­ation for students and research profes­sionals to live and work. Skills and knowledge from our public research system should be shared for public and private benefit

2. To make the most progress on innova­tion, data from both public and private research should be as open as possible. We need to make further progress on opening up government data, which can be a rich source of innovation at relatively little cost, partic­ularly if it is effect­ively marked with standard codes for geography, time and other attributes

3. In an era of new types of data, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and the wider Government Statis­tical Service must be given adequate resources
to retain and improve statis­tical series and to develop new ways of making data easily accessible to business and policy­makers, educat­ional instit­utions and civil society.

4. To prepare for the data economy we need to skill up the nation. We need to train teachers from primary school through to university lecturers to encourage data literacy in young people from an early age. Basic data handling and quanti­tative skills should be an integral part of the taught curric­ulum. In partic­ular, we should ensure that all students learn to handle and interpret real data using technology