Monday, 6 January 2014

TWO fully funded ESRC PhD STUDENTSHIPS linked with the ESRC Administrative Data Research Centre England

The new Administrative Data Research Centre (ADRC) England at the University of Southampton is pleased to announce TWO 1+3 PhD studentships which will be linked to the Centre and based within the University’s ESRC Doctoral Training Centre (DTC).  The studentships will provide up to four years’ funding (1 year Masters + 3 years PhD) including fees, Standard Maintenance Grant (currently £13,726 pa) and Research Training Support Grant (£750 pa). In addition students are eligible for the advanced quantitative methods supplement (currently £3000 pa and £250 pa respectively). High quality applicants will also be considered who have already obtained an average of 60% or more in an ESRC recognised Masters.  Applications are invited in the following topic areas to be supervised by ADRC co-investigators.  Two studentships will be awarded based on the excellence of the applicants.

Topic A: Establishing patterns of error in household and individual level consumption data
This project concerns the relationship between a range of consumption patterns and energy consumption levels. The project will review approaches to the estimation of reported 'consumption error'; combine and/or link consumption and other datasets from various sources to produce a set of experimental linked consumption datasets; develop methods to analyse the characteristics and distribution of error in reported consumption of, for example, water and energy.

Topic B: The Residential Mobility of Mental Health Service Users
The aim of this research is to enhance understanding of the residential mobility of patients receiving NHS mental health treatment.  Tracking geo-referenced patient movements via administrative sources, the project will undertake multilevel longitudinal analysis of individual and area variables to predict the numbers of moves, comparing trajectories of people with mental illness with a comparison sample of others treated for conditions that are also likely to give rise to multiple hospital treatment episodes.

Topic C: Multistage cluster sampling using geo-frame
In traditional approaches to multistage sampling design, the clusters are fixed in advance.  This PhD concerns investigation of multistage cluster sampling methodology in which geo-referenced information is incorporated into the sampling frame. The project will explore the possibility of using administrative data to perform dynamic clustering in order to minimize the intra-cluster correlation subject to the constraints of cost or work load, and thereby achieve to better trade-off between cost and design efficiency.

Topic D: Combining survey and administrative data for nonresponse investigation
This project aims to combine survey data with administrative data to analyse survey nonresponse behaviour. The project will use multilevel modelling to investigate key determinants of nonresponse and representativity indicators and to develop nonresponse adjustment methods. The project will inform survey practice on how to analyse and adjust for nonresponse using administrative data. The research will improve survey designs including adaptive and responsive survey designs.

Details of how to apply are provided on the Southampton ESRC DTC website at  Applicants must apply to the University and submit the additional DTC form downloadable from the website. The closing date for applications is Monday 28th February 2014 and interviews will be arranged with the short-listed applicants soon after this closing date. These studentships are for entry in October 2014.

For informal enquiries and further detail on any of these topics, contact: Prof Peter W Smith (, Director, ADRC England; or Prof David Martin (, Deputy Director, ADRC England

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Webinar on Social Science Data Management and Curation

Date: January 13, 2014
Time: 2:00-3:30pm US Central (8.00-8.30pm GMT)

Jared Lyle, Director of Curation Services, Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR).

Jared Lyle directs the Curation Services Unit, which is responsible for Metadata, Bibliography of Data-Related Literature, and Digital Preservation. His work includes developing and maintaining a comprehensive approach to data management and digital preservation policy at ICPSR.

Amy Pienta, Director of Data Acquisitions, Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR).

Amy Mehraban Pienta is Acquisitions Director at ICPSR. She is also a research affiliate of the University of Michigan Center on the Demography of Aging and the Population Studies Center at the University of Michigan. At ICPSR, she oversees new data acquisitions. Major responsibilities include identifying new data collections in the social sciences, negotiating with potential data depositors, strategic planning for new data acquisitions, and developing appraisal standards for data.


The speakers will discuss resources and tools for social science data management and curation, including data management planning, preparing data for sharing and preservation, and supporting access. They will highlight examples from ICPSR.


IMPORTANT: The webinar is free but in order to participate, please make sure that you register at

Monday, 28 October 2013

ONS International Migration Statistics User Guide

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has recently published an "International Migration Statistics First Time User Guide". The guide is designed as a short introduction to the key concepts which underpin migration statistics, and to provide information on the range of data sources/statistics related to international migration which are available. The guide is aimed at people who are new to using migration statistics.

The guide can be found on the ONS Migration theme page (in the 'Behind the Scenes' section) or can be accessed from the following link:

ONS would welcome any comments on the first time user guide, which should be sent to .

Learn how to set up and run a data service

There are still places available on the UK Data Archive's two-day event on How to Set up and Run a Data Service: The Challenges of Social Science Data.
Held on 28 and 29 November 2013 at the University of Essex (Colchester), this is a once-a-year opportunity to go behind the scenes and learn first-hand from specialists at the UK Data Archive. The Archive has over 40 years’ experience in selecting, ingesting, curating and providing access to data. UKDA are a designated Place of Deposit for The National Archives and are internationally acknowledged experts in this field.

Over the two days participants will learn about the strategies and practices used in the Archive's daily work, with a focus on storing and sharing social science data, including microdata, aggregate, qualitative and historical data.
Both days will include optional specialist surgeries which will give participants the opportunity to engage with Archive experts about specific needs and interests.
The workshop is best suited for those who are actively working with storing and sharing data for use in social science research, or plan to in the near future. This course is unlikely to be suitable for undergraduate or postgraduate students unless working specifically in a data archiving environment.

The course fee is £250, which includes all workshop materials plus coffee, lunch, drinks reception and evening meal on Day 1.

For a full programme and booking information:

Learn to cost, plan, manage and share social science data effectively

There are still places available for Planning, Appraising, Ingesting and Documenting Social Science Data, a one-day workshop at the UK Data Archive (University of Essex, Colchester) on 27 November 2013.

When it comes to dealing with the ever increasing commitments of research data, the UK Data Service continues to see institutions struggle with the challenges of domain specificity, in particular, how to treat social science data.

How do we help our local researchers cost, plan and manage social science data effectively and following best practice? How do we then appraise, ingest, curate and make accessible that mixed bag of data that a social scientist might have created? How can we effectively demonstrate the impact of sharing?

In this workshop UKDS will showcase our collaborative support and training materials that are being used to support:
  • research support staff who face dealing with ensuring compliance with data management responsibilities set out in almost all research applications (as well as persuading them it's the right thing to do)
  • institutional repository managers now charged with appraising, ingesting, describing and managing social science research data created by local academics.
The day includes hands-on work getting your hands dirty with data!

The workshop is best suited for those who are actively working with storing and sharing data for use in social science research, or plan to in the near future. This course is unlikely to be suitable for undergraduate or postgraduate students unless working specifically in a data archiving environment.

Course fees include all workshop materials plus refreshments and lunch:
· £30 for UK students
· £60 for UK academic staff (including research centres), ESRC researchers, voluntary and public sectors staff
· £150 for commercial and international participants

For a full programme and booking information:

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Help shape the content of the LSYPE age 25 survey

Deadline for written submissions: 22 November 2013
Consultative conference: 6 December 2013

CLS is seeking advice on what should be covered in the age 25 survey of the Longitudinal Study of Young People in England (LSYPE), scheduled for 2015.

CLS has recently taken on management of the LSYPE. Their first tasks are to re-contact all participants and plan the Age 25 Survey. This is an important stage of life for the participants, and the survey will provide vital insights into the pathways to adulthood. Your expertise will help uthem produce a high-quality survey.

CLS is asking academics, policy makers and other stakeholders to put forward their specific suggestions for content and questions by Friday 22 November 2013 and to join them at the LSYPE age 25 consultative conference on Friday 6 December 2013.

How to contribute to the consultation

CLS have organised the survey content into five key themes (see below), with a theme leader responsible for reviewing and prioritising your proposals, and presenting a summary for debate at the consultative conference. Further information on the themes and theme leaders can be found below, and a copy of the consultation form (to be returned to the relevant theme leader by 22 November) can be found on the consultation website. Please visit website for more details.
Register for the conference

Date: Friday 6 December 2013
Time: 10:00am – 4:00pm
Location: Institute of Education, University of London
Email to book your place

The conference is free of charge. You do not need to have made a written submission to attend.

Themes and theme leaders

Employment and resources (Claire Crawford, Institute for Fiscal Studies,
This theme covers current economic activity; activity histories; jobs and training; income and benefits; assets and housing; and future plans.

Household formation and relationships (Dylan Kneale, Relate,
This theme covers relationship and partnership histories; relationship with parents and families; children and childcare; and neighbourhood context.

Education (Alissa Goodman, Institute of Education,
This theme covers academic and vocational qualifications gained; qualifications being studied for; experience of and attitudes towards education; and aspirations and expectations.

Health and wellbeing
This theme is divided into two sections:
Identity and participation (Ingrid Schoon, Institute of Education,
This theme covers self concept; locus of control; self efficacy; gender, class and ethnic identity; politics; religion; civic participation and engagement; and social cohesion.

Help pick a new study name!

CLS are planning to rebrand the LSYPE to better reflect the broader scope of the study and the life stage of the participants. As part of the age 25 consultation, they are seeking ideas for a new name for the study. Please add your suggestions to your submission form, or email Carole Sanchez

Please forward this information on to others you think would be interested in contributing to the consultation.

Friday, 4 October 2013

Statistical Disclosure Control – Balancing Data Confidentiality and Data Quality

Manchester University is hosting SDC expert Larry Cox from the US National Institute for Statistical Science from 1st-15th November.

He is running a course whilst he is in Manchester: Statistical Disclosure Control – Balancing Data Confidentiality and Data Quality

Date: 6-7 November 2013