Our stakeholders

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"Partners who provide funding, strategic direction and organisational support"

The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) established the UK Data Service in October 2012 to facilitate high quality, impactful research and education.

An organisation made up of expert partners across the UK, we provide a comprehensive international service to meet the current and future digital data needs of researchers, data users and data owners from all sectors.

The UK Data Service frequently advises at a national and international level on data governance, ethics and confidentiality. We advised the Cabinet office on its development of the draft data ethics framework which influenced the implementation of the Digital Economy Act 2017. And we are often called upon to input into government White Papers around the use of data for research.

Following the establishment of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) in 2018, the new national body that brought together all UK Research Councils, Innovate UK and Research England, the strategic oversight and provision to the ESRC of independent assurance for the UK Data Service has been undergoing change. We are in the process of establishing a new Advisory Committee and will update you shortly.

If you are interested to find out more about joining this new advisory committee, please contact Gemma Hakins on comms@ukdataservice.ac.uk. We are particularly keen to hear from researchers who use economic and social data.

In addition to ESRC funding, we also receive financial support from our host organisations.

Host organisations

The UK Data Service is delivered by staff with special expertise in research data based at universities across the UK. These are the organisations that provide the foundation for our data, resources and services.

  • UK Data Archive

    University of Essex

    The UK Data Archive is curator of the largest collection of digital social science data in the United Kingdom. Founded in 1967, the Archive is an acknowledged centre of expertise in the areas of acquiring, curating and providing access to data. In 2005 it was designated a Place of Deposit by the National Archives, which allows the curation of public records. In 2010 it achieved certification under ISO27001, an international standard of information security.

  • Jisc


    Jisc is a registered charity and champions the use of digital technologies in UK education and research. As part of the Digital Resources Directorate of Jisc, UK Data Service staff provide access to, and specialist support for, the databanks of Inter-governmental organisations such as the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and OECD as well as aggregate statistics from the 1971 to 2011 UK censuses.

  • Cathie Marsh Institute for Social Research

    University of Manchester

    The Cathie Marsh Institute for Social Research (CMI) is a centre of research excellence specialising in the application of advanced quantitative methods in an interdisciplinary social science context. Named after Cathie Marsh who founded the Census Microdata Unit in 1993, CMI still plays a key role in the support and development of UK secondary microdata including the Sample of Anonymised Records (SARs) from the Census.

  • Geography and Environment

    University of Southampton

    The Population, Health and Wellbeing research group in Geography and Environment at the University of Southampton has an outstanding reputation for leadership in population and health research, based on the combination of innovation in methodology covering geographical information systems (GIS), spatial analysis and quantitative and qualitative methods with substantive expertise in census, population and health issues. Our work comprises spatial population analysis and modelling; cultures, spaces and practices of care and population health. Our members work closely with the Office for National Statistics, co-direct the ESRC National Centre for Research Methods and UK Data Service and edit the journal Health and Place.


    University of Edinburgh

    EDINA is a national academic data centre operating since 1995. It is designated by Jisc to support the activities of universities, colleges and research institutes across the UK and has a mission to develop and deliver shared services and infrastructure for research and education that are innovative, high quality and cost-effective, based on knowledge and expertise gained through research and development. EDINA also continues to act as the ESRC specialist geography unit for the census, supporting UK Data Service users in accessing and using the geography outputs of the 2011 and previous censuses.

  • Department of Information Studies

    University College London

    The UCL Department of Information Studies is an international centre for knowledge creation and transfer in the fields of librarianship, archives and records management, publishing, information science and digital humanities. The department brings together academics and practitioners in these fields, with research aiming to develop the understanding and insights needed to shape the emerging information environment, while elucidating and building on the historical developments that have created this environment.

  • Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis

    University College London

    The UCL Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (CASA) is one of the leading forces in the science of cities, generating new knowledge and insights for use in city planning, policy and design and drawing on the latest geospatial methods and ideas in computer-based visualisation and modelling. CASA is part of The Bartlett, UCL's global faculty of the built environment.

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