New service will build on pandemic’s lessons to maximise research value, says Alison Pritchard
The Covid-19 pandemic brought the Secure Research Service of the Office for National Statistics into its own. This data-sharing service already included a variety of de-identified data, such as census records, ONS data on births, deaths and crimes, and data provided by other departments and official bodies.
Its joined-up approach made the SRS the obvious starting point for answering Covid questions with statistics quickly and securely. Several projects that have become if not exactly household names then landmarks in the response to the pandemic, such as the weekly Coronavirus Infection Survey, rely on data sets within the SRS.