Welcome to the latest edition of the GSS Newsletter
- The 22nd GSS Methodology Symposium is taking place on the 12 July 2017 in London. The call for abstracts is now open and submissions should be made by 30 April 2017.
- Updated guidance for Exploring the effect of weather and climate on official statistics has been published by the ONS Time Series Analysis Branch (TSAB).
- Ever struggled to find the latest GSS policy? Ever faced a new challenge and found it hard to find guidance on best practice? Hopefully the new Policy Store is the answer.
- The new Statistical Officer and Higher Statistical Officer campaign is now open! For more information about the roles available and a candidate pack, see the recent news item on the GSS website.
Latest on Data Analytic Apprenticeships
In August 2016, GSS Professional Support ran a successful recruitment campaign for Data Analytic Apprenticeships (Level 4) in Wales.
Eight Data Analytic Apprentices commenced work/training before Christmas.
A tender is in process to procure a provider to deliver a Level 4 and 6 Data Analytics Apprenticeship in England.
We plan to offer GSS departments the option to recruit apprentices on these schemes in May 2017 based on Crown Commercial Services advice that a provider should be in place by that date.
Alison Adams, Head of Apprenticeships, is forming a Data Scientist Apprenticeship Task and Finish group to meet in March. Alison needs representatives from across the GSS Community who can work with their department’s HoPs to develop communications around the existing Level 4 and 6 Data Analytics apprenticeship and the potential development of further apprenticeships for the GSS.
If you are interested or wish to discuss further, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
RSS 2017 Conference – Submissions open
Submissions for talks and posters are now open for the Royal Statistical Society’s 2017 International Conference which takes place in Glasgow from 4-7 September.
Due to the range of topics presented and discussed and the breadth of the audience, this conference is the only one in the UK where all statisticians and users of data gather together. So it’s an excellent forum to share information, network and learn from one another.
This year’s conference streams are:
- Applications of Statistics
- Communicating & Teaching Statistics
- Data Science
- Environmental/Spatial Statistics
- Industry & Commerce
- Medical Statistics
- Methods & Theory
- Official Statistics & Public Policy
- Social Statistics
Each stream will consist of a mixture of sessions of invited talks, of contributed talks of 20 minutes each and of rapid fire presentations of five minutes each.
The deadline for the submission of talks is 31 March.
GSS Northern Conference
The GSS Northern Conference will be taking place on 23 March at the Marriot Hotel in Leeds.
If you are attending and haven’t already completed the pre-conference survey (to choose breakout sessions and provide special requirements), please do so before this Friday (24th)
Look out for the delegate pack a week or two before the conference, including the final agenda, plans to use Slack for feedback and discussion, and other useful information about the day
Please let Carolynn Gildea know as soon as possible if you are unable to attend.
To follow the latest updates about the conference and read our FAQs, please visit our webpage
Recent secondments into the Good Practice Team
We’ve recently published two blogs on the work from secondments into the Good Practice Team in London. Both were looking at helping statisticians and policy colleagues work together to inform decision making, a key objective of Better Statistics, Better Decisions.
Jenny Collins, from the Department for Communities and Local Government, made use of her policy contacts in her home department to find out more about what policy colleagues do and what they find helpful.
Joe Cheung, from the Department for Work and Pensions followed up some earlier work from George Worlledge (National Audit Office) to complete, and deliver, our training session at the Fast Stream Policy Base Camp on using statistics to improve policy outcomes.
If you are interested in our work on Statistics for Policy, please contact us on email@example.com.
Training & Events
- The GSS Capability Team is pleased to announce the Short Course Programme for 2016-17 (available here). This programme delivers courses that underpin robust analysis and data science in government, providing an overview of various statistical and analytical techniques and includes information on how and why to choose the appropriate methodology.
- These courses below are on offer in March/April
- Sample Design and Estimation (Social) L2 01/03/17
- Editing & Imputation L2 08/03/17
- Statistical Disclosure Control L1 22/03/17
- Communicating Statistics L1 29/03/17
- Data Visualisation L1 14/03/17
- Data Linkage L1 07/03/17
- Geography for Statistics – Spatial Analysis L2 09/03/17
- Quality and Statistics L1 23/03/17
- Administrative Data L1 30/03/17
- Data Visualisation L1 26/04/17
- The GSS Data Science Learning Curriculum has been launched, outlining new opportunities to strengthen your Data Science skills. The Learning Academy at ONS have purchased seats on the online educational environment Datacamp giving premium access to the courses. Members of the GSS can apply for a seat from the GSS team to boost data science capability across the GSS.
- This opportunity is open to GSS members of all professional backgrounds to build your coding and programming knowledge. Courses on the platform include Introduction to R and Python, Cleaning Data, Statistics in R and R for SAS, SPSS and STATA users. Places are “loaned” to you like a library book.
- You can access a wealth of Data Science training options via the Government Statistical Service (GSS) Learning Curriculum. The evolving Learning Academy Data Science learning pathway shows the learning offer from raising awareness through to expert level.
Courses available to members of the GSS in London:
Raising Awareness Course Description Site Date Start Time End Time Room Intro to Coding in R This is a one day classroom taught course that introduces coding in R. No prior knowledge is required. London to be announced Awareness of Python in Statistics This is a series of 6 x 1 hr courses that showcase via slides how to apply Python in Statistics. This is not a computer based/applied course. The sessions run as a series: Introductory (1 hr); Data Analysis (1 hr); Regression (1 hr); Data Cleaning and Classifying (1 hr); Data Visualisation (1 hr); Machine Learning (1 hr). London 31/03/2017 10:00 17:00 Meeting Room 3 https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/awareness-of-python-in-statistics-ldn-tickets-29751567740 Application of R in Statistics This one day classroom based course will use R to clean, sort and analyse data. This is a computer based session for the application of R. Pre-requisite: Intro to Coding in R London https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/application-of-r-in-statistics-ldn-meeting-room-3-tickets-29743056282 11/04/2017 10:00 16:00 Meeting Room 3 08/05/2017 10:00 16:00 Meeting Room 3 26/06/2017 10:00 16:00 Meeting Room 3 Data Visualisation Principles London 14/03/2017 10:00 16:00 Drummond Gate https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/data-visualisation-level-1-ldn-tickets-25906913275 Data Linkage & Machine Learning London 07/03/2017 10:00 16:00 Meeting Room 3 https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/data-linkage-level-1-ldn-tickets-25906692615
- The 2017 European Statistical Training Programme (ESTP) catalogue is now available. ESTP deliver a programme of courses providing statisticians the opportunity to participate in international training courses, workshops and seminars at postgraduate level. Please note all applications for these courses should be submitted through the UK ESTP contact point: firstname.lastname@example.org. Further details are available here.
- Following a review of the current MSc in Official Statistics, the GSS Capability team in partnership with the GSS, has developed an outline for a new Masters in Data Analytics for Government. We will share this with you as soon as the tender process has commenced.
- The tender process will run open on 1st Dec 2016 and will invite bids from all UK Universities by 31st Jan. A new procurement model will be used whereby more than one University will be held on a list of ‘Preferred Suppliers’, providing a choice to individuals as to which University to opt for. This will open up the accessibility to learning at the Masters level across government.
- New modules have been included, which cover data science skills, including:
- Programming for Data Analytics
- Machine Learning
- Data Mining
- NB – The MSc in Official Statistics will continue to run at Southampton University for those students who are already enrolled onto the programme. Some students may be able to transfer their credit points from Southampton to one of the newly selected Universities to continue with their studies. This will however depend on each University’s rules for the transfer of CATS points, and we have requested this information as part of the tender process.
GSS Blog Roll
- National Statistician’s Blog: John’s latest blog ‘Clearly serving the public good‘
- GSS Data Blog – “Discovering the GSS Data landscape – where we are so far” the latest on the GSS Data Discovery project.
- GSS Staff Blog: Robert Reeve’ s blog on ‘A year at the Central Policy Secretariat’
- Wider Reading – The Whitehall Monitor 2017 on the ‘The civil service as it faces Brexit‘ and Ryan Dunn from the DWP on Building a data visualisation design community
Ideas and contributions on existing or new content are encouraged. Your views are important to us. Please submit your content for the March newsletter by Wednesday 22 March 2017.
The next edition of the newsletter will be published on Wednesday 29 March 2017.
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