Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings linked to 2011 Census - England and Wales

The Wage and Employment Dynamics (WED) data linkage project is a collaboration led by researchers from the University of the West of England, aiming to better understand wage inequalities in Britain. Phase one of the project is made up of two parts: 1) Linkage of the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) data to 2011 Census; and 2) the development of Stata code to enrich the ASHE data. This will allow for insight into the dynamics of wage and employment issues, and how characteristics such as gender, disability, and ethnicity influence these.  

The Wage and Employment Dynamics team has enriched the core ASHE dataset by adding new variables such as minimum wage rates and survey dates and carrying out methodological reviews on the data and sampling. They have also created new weights which account for attrition and selection effects. These are available from 2004. Access to the code will enable research into the dynamics of wage and employment issues, from labour market entry, through job mobility and career progression to retirement. The code created by the WED team will be available within the ONS Secure Research Service on a shared accessible drive. Please note that this code is not part of the ONS ASHE official Statistics output.

Component datasets and linkage

This dataset is composed of the ASHE 2011 dataset which includes de-identified personal information such as age and gender, employment information such as wage and working hours and employer information such as the work postcode. ASHE has been linked to the 2011 Census which provides additional personal information such as education, qualifications, country of birth as well as family information.

Timeframe 1997 - 2021
Update Frequency Annual
Population ASHE population spine (approx. 0.66% of the entire workforce)
Coverage England and Wales
Size ~175,000 records per year
Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings linked to 2011 Census - England and Wales


Examples of research questions

  • How do people’s earnings change throughout their career? And how does this differ depending on characteristics such as gender, disability, or ethnicity?
  • What are the patterns or characteristics of those who do and do not progress out of low paid employment?
  • What is the relationship between migration and the labour market?
  • What role do employers play in wage inequality?

This list is illustrative only and intended to demonstrate the research potential of the dataset. For research priorities, see the areas of research interest or ADR UK funding opportunity.

Core documentation

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User guide

Both the user guide for ASHE-2011 Census and Code for Enriched ASHE quick start guide documents can be found on the Wage and Employment Dynamics website.

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Data dictionary

The data dictionary is available on the ADR UK Data Catalogue.

Other supporting resources

Resource Description
Training to use the data See the upcoming training opportunities on the data, as well as recorded webinars from previous training sessions.

Published research using the data

Accessing the data

Accredited researchers with an approved project can access the ASHE linked to Census 20122 dataset via the ONS Secure Research Service. 

View further details and apply for access using the information on the ADR UK Data Catalogue.

View ASHE linked to 2011 Census - England and Wales 

Funding opportunity

ADR UK is inviting applications for funding to conduct policy-relevant research using ADR England flagship datasets, including ASHE linked to 2011 Census. Research fellows will address priority research questions, generate insights and demonstrate the value of ADR England data. Find out more about this funding opportunity on the UKRI funding finder.

See the funding opportunity

“This project addresses weaknesses in our evidence base – improving the quality of longitudinal earnings data and extending coverage to a broader range of characteristics –that should enable researchers to give new and innovative insights into the wage and employment dynamics of the lowest paid.”

Tim Butcher, Chief Economist, Low Pay Commission

Download the ADR England Flagship Datasets brochure

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