The Economics and Social Research Council (ESRC) has today (27 September 2018) launched the Administrative Data Research Partnership (ADRP) which will maximise the potential of administrative data as a resource for high-quality innovative research in the UK.

ESRC will be working in close partnership with the Office for National Statistics (ONS), and also alongside the chief statisticians for the devolved administrations and their teams to deliver the new data infrastructure.

The ONS will expand and improve the established Secure Research Service and significantly increase the range of administrative data available for research. ONS will focus on increased data reuse, to deliver efficiencies to government departments (they only need to provide data once), and maximise the use of those data, by identifying shared priorities and objectives with government departments, so that they directly benefit as both policy users and data owners. ONS’s strong existing relationships with government departments, and successful established service, will help establish good levels of trust and mitigate concerns about data security.

The National Statistician John Pullinger says: “The UK is experiencing a data revolution. New and previously unimaginable sources are becoming available, along with the analytical tools and expertise that together will increase and improve the evidence available to decision makers in government, business and beyond.

“This partnership unites the skills and experience of the ONS, the ESRC and the devolved administrations and provides the crucial assurance that data will be used securely, ethically, transparently and firmly in the public interest.”

For further information, read the Economic and Social Research Council's statement on addressing major societal challenges by harnessing government data.