This 2014 collection of short case studies demonstrates the value of small area census data, and advocates for retaining the method in the the 2021 Census.
The UK census produces detailed population data at a small geographical scale, and with high coverage. This provides a unique resource for understanding population characteristics and distributions in the UK.
In 2013, the ONS consulted on the future of population statistics. Proposals included survey-based approaches which would not support the same level of detail, and thus applications of the statistics which relied on small area data. The Society's response to the consultation advocated for the continued capture of small area data in the census.
As a further response, the Society worked with Professor David Martin of the University of Southampton to produce this selection of short case studies which demostrate the importance of small area data across a diverse range of applications.
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Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) (2013). Small area data: Looking towards a 2021 census. Available at: www.rgs.org/impact/2021census/. Last accessed on: <date>
Sefton Council combined council data and Cadcorp web mapping software to create an interactive online portal
Geographical research aimed to improve the lives of the lesbian, gay and bisexual communities in Brighton.
Geographical research changed government policy and popular understanding of the importance of common land and green space in local communities.
Manchester City Council worked with Gaist to ensure it had the right data to secure additional investment for maintaining its highways network to support the city’s growth ambitions.
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