1. Overview

We are always investigating ways of improving our standard population statistics, whether by improving the quality of what we already produce or by introducing new statistics that help meet user needs. You can find details of the work we're currently undertaking in our Research Update. More information on the projects that we have completed is provided below.

As well as this research into our standard statistics we are conducting a programme of research into how we can produce population statistics following the 2021 Census. Details of this work are provided in the Administrative Data Census Research pages.

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2. Recent research

This section contains link to research projects we have completed in the last year.

Population Estimates by Characteristics - this project developed a simple method for producing population estimates by country of birth, nationality and ethnic group. Unlike the existing estimates by country of birth and nationality these estimates are adjusted to be consistent with the main mid-year population estimates to make it easy to use the figures in combination with other statistics.

Population Estimates by Ethnic Group - the project above includes the production of estimates of the population by ethnic group using data from the Annual Population Survey. An alternative approach using administrative data is being investigated as part of the longer-term work in producing population statistics after the 2021 Census. This report provides an explanation of why we have investigated the different approaches, and the strengths and weaknesses of each.

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3. Non-technical improvements to population and migration statistics

Review of timeliness of statistics on internal migration between local authorities in England and Wales (120.9 Kb Pdf)

In December 2013, the UK Statistics Authority assessment of migration statistics requested that we review the timeliness of our local authority internal migration statistics. This report explains that review and its outcomes.

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4 .Older research

This section contains links to research completed before 2016.

Further understanding of the causes of discrepancies between rolled forward and census based local authority mid-year population estimates for 2011 (1.57 Mb Pdf) and associated Data tool (3.64 Mb ZIP) - 17 September 2015

A comparison of international estimates of long-term migration - 27 November 2014

User update: An update on assessing the feasibility of using Sempaphore data to improve migration statistics (256.5 Kb Word document) - 21 November 2014

User Update: reviewing the methods used to estimate internal migration at local authority (LA) level in England and Wales (105.6 Kb Pdf) - 06 August 2014

User Update: reviewing the methods used to estimate international emigration at LA level in England and Wales (115.1 Kb Pdf) - 06 August 2014

Using Administrative data to set plausibility ranges for population estimates- assessment following the 2011 Census (1.1 Mb Pdf) and Plausibility range data (593.5 Kb Excel sheet) - 10 July 2014

User update: assessing the feasibility of using Semaphore data to improve migration statistics (115.7 Kb Pdf) - 13 June 2014

Population estimates by ethnic group (PEEGs) – external review March 2014

Analysis of internal migration research series, years ending June 2009 to June 2011 (194.6 Kb Pdf) - 14 November 2013

Internal migration by LAs in England and Wales - research series, years ending June 2009 to June 2011 - 14 November 2013

Using the research series data files - please read (58.4 Kb Pdf) - 14 November 2013

Comparison of previous and improved methods of estimating international immigration at LA Level (255 Kb Pdf) - 26 June 2013

Methods used to revise the subnational population estimates for mid-2002 to mid-2010 (640 Kb Pdf) - 30 April 2013

Components of difference for revised mid-2002 to mid-2010 population estimates (151 Kb Excel sheet) - 30 April 2013

Methods used to revise the national population estimates for mid-2002 to mid-2010 (171.1 Kb Pdf) - 13 December 2012

Examining the difference between the rolled-forward mid-2011 population estimates and the 2011 Census-based mid-year estimates (MYEs) at LA level (1.19 Mb Pdf) and associated tables and charts - 25 September 2012:

Methodology for population estimates by ethnic group - May 2011

Quality and Methodology Information for Population Estmates by Ethnic Group (PEEG) - 6 February 2012

Comparison of mid-2010 Population Estimates by Ethnic Group against the 2011 Census estimates - 25 July 2013

Difference between rolled-forward mid-2011 estimates and 2011 Census MYEs (6.91 Mb Excel sheet)

LA cohort change over time, 2001 to 2011 (9.14 Mb Excel sheet)

LA single year of age (SYOA) population comparison charts (12.92 Mb Excel sheet)

An error relating to the 85+ age group in the 'rolled-forward 2011 new' and ‘rolled-forward 2011 old' was found in the original published spreadsheet. This corrected version was published on 27 September 2012.

Following user demand, an additional table was published on 2 October 2012 that includes the rolled-forward mid-2011 population estimates (old and new methods) broken down by SYOA and sex (14.28 Mb Excel sheet)

Explaining the Difference Between the 2011 Census Estimates and the Rolled-Forward Population Estimates (361.9 Kb Pdf) - 16 July 2012

Note: the national-level findings of the 16 July 2012 report have been substantially superseded by those of the report of 13 December 2012. Users are advised to refer to the December report for an explanation of how the difference between the Census-based and rolled-forward mid-year estimates arose, and how this difference developed over the decade.

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