The Office for Statistics Regulation (OSR) is undertaking a review of the National Statistics (NS) designation to understand how it should be designed to reflect fitness for purpose in a data-abundant world. As part of our phase 3 research, we spoke to producers across departments through workshops with heads of profession for statistics, webinars with official statistics analysts, conversations with chief statisticians, and gathered written responses to a consultation paper. This findings paper brings together the main themes raised with us and sets out our proposals for the next stage of the review.

We asked questions under four research strands:

Provenance: How can statistics producers show the public that they are applying high professional standards, that the public’s trust is merited?

Fitness for purpose: How can statistics producers provide users with clear current information about the quality of the data/statistics to aid users’ choice and interpretation?

Value: How can we tell the national life story using National Statistics?

Accountability: How can statistics producers show they are held to account?

The following section describes what we asked in the consultation paper, what producers told us and our proposals for what next for each of the research strands.

We have grouped the research strands into two themes:

  • Demonstrating accountability
    • Provenance
    • Accountability
  • Adding value for users
    • Fitness for purpose
    • Value

The nature of the NS designation is particularly addressed under the first of the themes.

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