The Office for Statistics Regulation has today published a review on Reproducible Analytical Pipelines (RAP).

RAP is a reproducible way of producing official statistics. It involves using code to automate manual processes, version control software to manage code and code hosting platforms to facilitate peer review and publish analysis.

We concluded that RAP principles support the highest standards of the Code of Practice for Statistics. We found that a RAP approach increases opportunities for collaboration and innovation. It reduces the risk of errors and ensures that statisticians can make the best use of their skills. In short, it is a more robust and transparent way to produce statistics and improve value for users.

Whilst we have seen excellent examples of RAP principles being applied to official statistics, it is not yet the default approach. Most new work is currently produced using traditional approaches. We recommend that steps are taken within the Government Statistical Service and Analysis Function to promote and support increased use of RAP. We want to see RAP become the default approach to producing official statistics.

Ed Humpherson, Director General, OSR said:

“There is great work across the GSS to roll out and produce statistics using RAP principles. But it is not yet the norm. Changes are needed if this approach is to become the first choice for statisticians. This will require collaboration and strong leadership within organisations and across government.”.

Read Reproducible Analytical Pipelines: Overcoming barriers to adoption in full