The aim of the UK Data Forum is to provide strategic direction to the ongoing development and maintenance of a coherent and robust national data infrastructure for UK social and economic research and research in related fields of interest.

UK Strategy for Data Resources for Social and Economic Research

The UK Data Forum have published a five-year plan to inform and guide the development and utilisation of data and related resources for social and economic research.

Terms of reference

The terms of reference of the UK Data Forum are:

  • to develop a clear view of the key national and international data resources that are required to meet the future needs of social and economic research and research in related fields of interest
  • to identify gaps in the current data infrastructure, and determine how those gaps might be closed
  • to prioritise future data provision, including the balance between:
    • enhancing access to and sharing of existing datasets
    • maintaining ongoing support for major datasets of national importance
    • new data collection
    • withdrawal of support and archiving of existing datasets that have outlived their usefulness.
  • to agree principles and strategies for the co-ordinated development and co-funding of prioritised future data resources, as appropriate
  • to agree training and capacity building initiatives to promote the effective analysis of data resources
  • to identify and seek to resolve the practical and ethical issues associated with linking between data sources.

The UK Data Forum recognises that various concordats between the ESRC and government departments are already in place or are being established and that efforts at data coordination are being made across government departments and the devolved bodies. These represent a strong foundation for future collaboration. The Forum builds on and strengthens such work to provide a cross-council, cross-government mechanism for the promotion of collaborative working.


Previous meetings

Minutes from the most recent UKDF meetings are provided below.

26th meeting: 11 July 2018