Introducing ADR UK Flagship Datasets and the Learning Hub
As part of an ongoing commitment to support more researchers to understand, access, and use administrative data, ADR UK has published two significant website updates. The ADR UK Flagship Datasets pages showcase a selection of datasets that will have wide appeal. Meanwhile, a new ADR UK Learning Hub aims to equip researchers at all career stages, as well as wider audiences, with the knowledge, skills, and resources to get started with using administrative data.
This suite of resources has been developed as a cross-partnership effort, and with a variety of contributors. They are a product of the Training and Capacity Building Strategy 2021-26 which seeks to raise awareness and use of administrative data for research by equipping researchers with the skills and information they need.
Available to all audiences, from individuals with no prior awareness of administrative data to advanced career researchers, the new resources help to explain what administrative data is, what routes there are to access it, and how to use it securely for research. They also signpost towards additional learning opportunities and resources. This all feeds into a common goal to build a cross-sector community of advocates for administrative data research in the public good.
“This is an exciting advancement in the delivery of our Training and Capacity Building strategy. We hope both resources provide a useful entry point for those who are curious about using administrative data by providing tips and advice, insights and explanations, and clear information and signposting to further training and resources.”
Emily Oliver, Head of Research and Capacity Building at ADR UK
Exploring the UK’s wealth of public sector data
ADR UK flagship datasets are of significant research value and we anticipate will have wide appeal to researchers. The new pages featuring them are geared towards researchers considering using administrative datasets for research, perhaps for the first time. Each flagship dataset page explains the dataset’s component datasets and characteristics, core documentation, how to access the dataset, and any available training or recordings. Readers are therefore given a starting point for working with a flagship dataset, and a springboard to find out more.
Developing skills in administrative data
The ADR UK Learning Hub supports individuals across institutions, sectors, and disciplines to build confidence in using administrative data for research. It breaks the more complex aspects down into engaging sections. By simply browsing each section, a user can progress from never having heard of administrative data to understanding what it is, how it is used, and where they can learn more.
There are currently two main sections on the Learning Hub. The first introduces administrative data, explains how it is different to other types of data, and points towards further introductory resources and courses. The second, more substantial section guides researchers towards information, skills, and methods for working with administrative data. This includes content on developing statistical code. It also highlights ways for researchers to gain expertise in administrative data through experience, providing a hub for people to find or advertise job and training opportunities.
This platform will continue to be updated and improved, with two further main sections planned.
“The Learning Hub is central to ADR UK’s exciting initiative to enable research access to UK linked administrative data. I anticipate it growing in importance within UK social science.”
Mark Elliot, Professor of Data Science at the University of Manchester School of Social Science