New code of practice for UK government statistics

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RSS fellows have helped provide input into the UK Statistics Authority's new revised Code of Practice for Statistics, designed to be used across UK government.

Any government body or department that produces National Statistics has been required to comply with the Code since it was first issued in 2008. It imposes high standards on the way in which data is collected and presented and can be adopted voluntarily by other bodies. 

The Code’s principles and practices have been rewritten under three pillars: ‘Trustworthiness’, ‘Quality’ and ‘Value’. In this framework there are not only guidelines for those in government who produce statistics - statisticians and data scientists - but also for users of statistics, including analysts, researchers, policy-makers, communications officers and advisers.

The RSS's support for the Code of Practice is longstanding. Our Data Manifesto recognises its importance and presses for its wider use, so that government and other public officials handle data with integrity. We held a meeting in September last year with the Office for Statistics Regulation to discuss the proposed revised Code and the Society submitted written input (PDF) to the OSR public consultation. 

Stephen Penneck, RSS Honorary Officer for National Statistics, said: 'We are very pleased to have taken part in the development of the new Code through the public consultation. In addition to upholding the trustworthiness, quality and value of official statistics, the Code of Practice has a vital role in raising the standards of all government data sources. We encourage all those producing or using statistics in the public interest to read this document and to uphold its principles.'

 

Official Statistics UK Statistics Authority National Statistics Advisory Group (NSAG) RSS Data Manifesto Office for Statistics Regulation (OSR)