The Methodology Group in the Office for National Statistics (ONS) provides the lead on the statistical methods and techniques that underpin all ONS surveys and statistical outputs. They provide advice on best practice and guidance on all parts of the statistical process including:

  • statistical design and infrastructure

  • survey and sample design

  • data linkage

  • estimation

  • disclosure control

  • time series

  • index numbers

  • data editing

  • imputation for missing data

  • census methodology

  • the management and measurement of quality

  • harmonisation

The group also provides support on the ONS Address Register and on the geographies and standard classifications that underpin all National Statistics and most other government statistics. Methodology is also leading cutting-edge work looking at the value of "Big Data" for ONS outputs, and more widely.


Methodology in ONS sits within the Methods, Data and Research Directorate – with the majority of the staff working at our offices in Newport, South Wales and Titchfield in South Hampshire. A smaller number of staff are located in our offices at Drummond Gate in London where our Methodology Advisory Service is largely based.

The organisational structure is currently being reviewed to respond to an increased focus on Data Science, Big Data and the growing importance of digital technologies – but the core teams and functions remain the same.

Our work

For information on the support we provide on statistical methods see:

For information about cross-cutting teams see:

Further support is provided to ONS and the Government Statistical Service GSS through:


You can find published papers and further detail of the work of Methodology’s via:

  • the Survey Methodology Bulletin, which publishes articles on developments in survey methodology

  • the GSS Methodology Series, a series of working papers and one-off articles on methodological topics

  • a former newsletter 3moons – past editions include a range of methodological articles and are provided for reference

For advice or support on any aspect of statistical methodology please contact us via the relevant links or by email: