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GSS > Learning and development > Sharing webinars

Sharing webinars

What is a sharing webinar?

The Best Practice and Impact division (BPI) host regular sharing webinars which are open to all government departments.  The aim of these webinars is to help create a culture of shared innovation across the Government Statistical Service (GSS).  These sessions are 90 minutes long and are broadcast as live web broadcasts or dial-in sessions.

Each webinar is made up of three short presentations showcasing work relevant to the topic of interest. Participants can ask questions and find out more about the topic, with the overall goal being:

  • improved collaboration
  • problem solving
  • peer learning

John Pullinger was very supportive of this initiative. He said “It’s always encouraging to see expertise being shared to join up work across the GSS”.

All materials will be shared, including code where appropriate, and BPI will facilitate follow-up actions when there is an appetite. The webinars themselves will be broadcast live and made available after the date of broadcast, via BPI’s youtube channel.

To get involved in discussions about sharing webinars, you can visit the dedicated slack channel.

Upcoming sharing webinars

When: February 2020

Subject: Data linkage

More information will be added soon.

Previous sharing webinars

Power BI is a collection of software services that lets you connect to your data sources, visualise data to discover what’s important and share that information with anyone you want. Power BI is being used to display and creatively present and disseminate data across government, internally and externally.

On 11 July 2019, the Best Practice and Impact division hosted a webinar on Power BI. There were presentations from colleagues in the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, Companies House and the Office for National Statistics.

There were presentations on:

  • the process involved
  • lessons learned from introducing Power BI into a department
  • the use of Power BI internally to display business performance
  • the use of Power BI externally (i.e. for publishing statistics)

Did you miss this webinar?

We have published the Power BI presentation materials (PPT, 10.5MB). Please contact the presenter if you require further information.

Want to get involved?

To get involved in discussions about Power BI, you can visit the dedicated slack channel.

Accurate geographical referencing is vital to making any statistical outputs and datasets compatible and comparable. However, each department, agency and service provider will capture slightly different information about an address or may store it in a particular format to suit their needs.

Different storage methods and information captured mean that address data is often inconsistent, is of varying quality, and can be held in multiple places. Matching addresses is much easier if they’re written in the same way, so we need a process where lots of existing data can be matched against something definitive and trustworthy. That’s where address matching comes in.

On 14 May 2019, the Best Practice and Impact division hosted a webinar on address matching. There were presentations from colleagues in the Valuation Office Agency, Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government and the Office for National Statistics. The presentations all focused on innovative techniques used to match addresses.

We received some great feedback from this webinar, with departments using their new knowledge to drive improvements in their own teams:

“Off the back of the address matching webinar the other week I’ve had several departments get in touch with me to further discuss methodologies. The methods, when applied to our data, I think is going to drive a massive improvement in our process.”

Did you miss this webinar?

We have published the address matching presentation materials (PPT, 5.93MB). Please contact the presenter for further information.

Want to get involved?

To get involved in discussions about address matching, you can visit the dedicated slack channel.


The GSS awards were held at the GSS conference in Edinburgh 1 October. On 2 December, the Best Practice and Impact division hosted a webinar on winners of the GSS awards. This webinar was a chance to hear from all the winners.

Collaboration award

Winner: Cross-government champions network for Reproducible Analytical Pipelines (RAP)

The RAP champions network has developed capability across the GSS to implement Reproducible Analytical Pipelines (RAP). The network, through its work both within departments and across government, has created a community of analysts dedicated to improving the quality of statistical publications in line with the new GSS Quality Strategy.

Methods award

Winner: Department for Transport (DfT)

A change of reporting systems for around half of police forces created a major discontinuity in DfT’s statistics on people killed or seriously injured. These statistics are crucial to measure progress and improve road safety. With the Methodology Advisory Service (based in the Office for National Statistics), the road safety statistics team developed a time series and a logistic regression adjustment approach (PDF, 3MB) to produce estimates as if all forces had been using the new systems.

Communication award

Winner: Office for National Statistics (ONS)

In early 2019, the Policy Evidence and Analysis Team (PEAT) at ONS completed analysis of the impact of automation on occupations. Recognising the importance of widening awareness on this topic, a matter of public and policy interest, PEAT and the Digital Content team at ONS worked collaboratively to produce two outputs that could satisfy a variety of audiences, including the inquiring citizen and more experienced expert users or information foragers.

Impact award

Winner: Office of Rail and Road (ORR)

A key area of work for ORR has been on accessibility. In particular,understanding the experiences of disabled passengers who use the railway. Previously there had been negative press about assisted travel which presented a picture of a scheme that was fundamentally unfit for purpose. A major concern for ORR was the absence of reliable data to support or refute that narrative. ORR have now developed an extensive evidence base. Over the past year they have used data to recommend vital changes to the railway, which should improve the travel experiences of disabled passengers. All of this evidence has also been used by policy colleagues to publish new guidance for operators called Improving Assisted Travel.

Did you miss this webinar?

We have published the presentation materials (PPT, 18.3MB). Please contact the presenter for further information.

You can also watch the webinar on YouTube.

Regional sharing seminars

As well as the webinars run by BPI, a group of analysts from the GSS presentation and dissemination sub group are planning to hold regional sharing webinars over the next year. Each webinar will last half a day and will involve presentations, interactive sessions and discussions around the presentation and dissemination of statistics.

Email for more information.


If you have any ideas for future sharing webinars or would like to present on one of the proposed topics, please email