NEWS - Data research initiative secures £90m funding extension

The administrative data initiative transforming researchers’ access to the UK’s public sector data, which SCADR is part of, will continue for a further five years.

The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), will invest over £90 million in Administrative Data Research UK (ADR UK). This will ensure policy-relevant data linking and research projects across the UK can continue.

Global leader in data infrastructure

ADR UK is a leader in giving accredited researchers access to de-identified data from government departments, local authorities and health authorities. This enables better-informed policy decisions that address major societal challenges and improve public service provision across a range of areas including education, healthcare and crime.

This continued commitment ensures policy-relevant data linking and research projects across the UK can continue. There will be no loss of the vital skills, infrastructure or momentum that have been built up during the first three years since ADR UK was formed.

ADR UK helps maintain the UK’s position as a global leader in data infrastructure. It demonstrates the value of using insights from the wealth of existing data to inform decision making for the good of society.

National partnerships across the UK

As well as enabling the continuation of national partnerships of ADR EnglandADR ScotlandADR Wales and ADR Northern Ireland to continue, and funding the ONS Secure Research Service, this renewed investment means ADR UK can also establish a training and capacity building hub to ensure a pipeline of skilled data scientists to analyse administrative datasets in the future.

Dr Emma Gordon, Director of ADR UK, said: 

We are delighted to have secured this continued funding, giving all of our partners the certainty they need to continue vital administrative data linking and research to inform policy decisions, improve public services, and improve the lives of people across the UK. This funding extension is testament to the expertise and hard work of colleagues across the ADR UK partnership. It demonstrates that we now have a tried-and-tested model that works, funding a network of trusted research environments across the UK including the Secure Research Service at ONS, working with government and researchers, and delivering tangible benefits for both public policy and the wider research community. We have commissioned landmark projects with UK Government departments, while our partners in the devolved administrations have continued to grow their portfolios of policy-relevant research and open up access to data. We are now an important step closer to realising our long-term vision of being the default choice to host linked administrative data from across the entirety of UK and devolved government, making it accessible to a deep pool of trained researchers to generate insights routinely used to inform policy and practice.

Read the full press release here

This article was published on 09 Sep 2021