The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has been keeping busy during the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic, and the data collected and analysed by the ONS has been key in helping the country understand the impact of the virus.
The ONS might be best known for its census data, but the organisation’s remit is much broader than that. Frankie Kay, interim director general for data capability at the ONS, tells Computer Weekly how it has worked with academia, the government and the NHS to help the UK fight the virus.
Data science has played an important role, not just in informing the public and giving them “as much clarity and transparency as we can in terms of the pandemic itself”, she explains, but also in looking at the socio-economic impact of the pandemic.
ONS has had to spin up new surveys quicker than ever before. The questions asked have also changed during