Highlights from the fourth week of Analysis in Government Month 2022

We’ve wrapped up the last full week of Analysis in Government Month and it’s been another great week of live events, blogs, articles and learning videos. Here’s a short review of the week: 

Live events

MOD’s analysis and insights team on the wraparound childcare project

In the first event of the week, Tom Mills, a social researcher in the Ministry of Defence (MOD) Analysis and Insights team, talked about how they brought together skills and approaches from across the MOD analysis community.  

The aim was to improve retention of Armed Forces colleagues by focusing on the availability of reliable childcare provision, enabling people to blend work with family life. 

The team collaborated with social researchers, statisticians, economists, and policy professionals, developing survey questions to get to the heart of the issue. 

Evaluation proved to be the backbone of the project and kept the project focussed, tying research efforts in to achievable and useful goals. 


Festivals, football and how to bring back fun

This was an interesting session as most of us have some experience of the work of this team, without even knowing it. 

As events and sporting occasions were cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic, a multi-disciplinary team was tasked with looking at how to safely re-open sporting venues, music festivals and theatres. The team brought together expertise from Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, University College London, Loughborough University, and private industry movement strategy experts.

With many late nights looking at data from venue cameras, attendee movements and air quality monitors, the team worked together to produce detailed insights into how people behaved both at events, and as they travelled to or from events. 

This detailed analysis enabled venues to be able to re-open safely. But, members of the team have found they are now unable to attend an event without thinking about ventilation and air quality! 


Asking yourself the three key questions on loss estimation  

This thought-provoking presentation was delivered by Aiden Smith, Marc Ellsmore, and Andrew MacLaren from UK Government Investments. The presenters introduced approaches used to estimate future financial losses or expenditure in the context of uncertainty or when data are very limited. 

In relation to loss estimation, the Contingent Liabilities Approval Framework (His Majesty’s Treasury) covers three questions: 

  1. What is the likelihood of crystallisation? 
  2. What is the estimated cost of the contingent liability if it were to crystallise? 
  3. What is the expected loss associated with the contingent liability? 

Explaining the framework, Marc showed us two case studies on government guarantees. The first case study concentrated on a loan guarantee scheme for UK small and medium-sized enterprises. The second case study discussed a sovereign guarantee of a £200m interest free loan to a sub-Saharan Africa.  

Andrew then showed us a further case study looking at indemnities, which offer compensation for financial or physical damage, such as medical negligence. The last part of the presentation explained approaches including the use of published empirical evidence and estimating the probability of losses when there is little data available. 


Analysis Function strategy pre-launch event

Osama Rahman, Chief Analyst and Chief Scientific Adviser at the Department for Education, and Cath Bremner, Strategy Lead in the Analysis Function central team, delivered a session to delegates raising awareness of the Analysis Function. They outlined the vision of the upcoming Analysis Function Strategy, which will be published shortly. 

The vision for the Analysis Function will be delivered through six strategic objectives centred around:

  • providing central support and advice
  • promoting innovative tools and techniques
  • setting and raising analytical standards
  • building an active and diverse community
  • ensuring we have skilled people at the right place at the right time
  • delivering influential, joined-up and responsive analytical leadership 

If you would like to know more about the AF Strategy launch, or would like the team to come along and present to your department, profession, or community please email Analysis.Function@ONS.gov.uk. 


YouTube learning videos launched

AiG Month 2022   Mean, median and mode 

AiG Month 2022   Percentage difference versus percentage point difference 

AiG Month Accessibility and data visualisation 


Inside the minds of our senior leaders 

Have you ever wondered what makes your senior leaders tick? Perhaps you would like to hear about the best bit of advice they’ve had, or find out about their dream holiday destination? 

We quizzed a selection of Departmental Directors of Analysis about all these burning questions and more in this Analysis in Government Month Senior leader interview. 



Working together

Eddie Cole, Analysing climate risk in government 

Geraldine Tetteh, Innovating new policy for digital trade 

Dominic Hale, Developing the Integrated Data Service 


My career in analysis

Catherine Hutchinson, Analysis as a career 

Richard Cable, Analysis as a career 


Coming up in the final week

Monday’s Learning Byte on the AF Twitter page featured the launch of a new learning video on ‘Percentage difference vs percentage point difference’. 

We have two more blog articles to be published, so look out for those on our dedicated blog page. 

Our final live event is called What do we know about non-UK nationals in the labour market? and it will take place on Tuesday 31 May. You can register for tickets on Eventbrite


Follow the AF Eventbrite page to browse our calendar and receive notifications for any upcoming events. You can also keep up with all the latest news on Twitter @Gov_Analysis.