This site uses cookies

Some of these cookies are essential, while others help us to improve your experience by providing insights into how the site is being used.

For more detailed information please check our Cookie notice

Necessary cookies

Necessary cookies enable core functionality. This website cannot function properly without these cookies.

Cookies that measure website use

If you provide permission, we will use Google Analytics to measure how you use the website so we can improve it based on our understanding of user needs. Google Analytics sets cookies that store anonymised information about how you got to the site, the pages you visit, how long you spend on each page and what you click on while you’re visiting the site.

Using data to analyse the experience of crime victims

Researchers and students seeking to analyse crime victims’ experiences can find a host of useful data held by the UK Data Service.

That was the message at a recent workshop held by three Essex-based ESRC-funded big data centres at the University of Essex last month.

Key datasets held in the UK Data Service collection include the Office for National Statistics’ Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) – previously known as the British Crime Survey – an annual household survey with circa 35,000 respondents each year; the Scottish Crime and Justice Survey, which started in 1993 and aims to provide reliable statistics on people’s experience of crime in Scotland; and the Commercial Victimisation Survey, which provides a source of information on crime and crime-related issues as they affect businesses in England and Wales and generates responses from 4,000 businesses each year.

Anca Vlad, Research Data Services Officer at the UK Data Service, presented at the event along with colleagues from the Business and Local Government Data Research Centre and Understanding Society, and the Institute for Social and Economic Research, at the University of Essex.

She said:  “There are different levels of restriction depending on how detailed and sensitive the information being sought isFor example, under Secure Access conditions, researchers using the CSEW can access data on drinking behaviour, drug use, stolen goods, children’s self-completion modules, sexual identity, detailed geographies, hate crime, and interpersonal violence. The UK Data Service also holds other datasets – both qualitative and quantitative – covering a wide selection of subject areas such as regional crime trends, cyber crime, prison design and online dating scams.

The event was organised by Prof Pamela Cox, the Director of the South East Network for Social Sciences (SeNSS) Doctoral Training Partnership, and principal investigator on an ESRC funded study of Victims’ Access to Justice.

Prof Cox said: “Victim inequalities take many different forms. Similarly, victims’ access to the justice system varies considerably – by class, ethnicity, gender and crime-type, for example. Using large datasets like those held at the UKDS and ISER help us to better understand and close justice gaps.”

Other speakers at the invitation-only workshop included Prof Andromachi Tseloni from Nottingham Trent University, Dr Elisa Impara from the Victims’ Access to Justice project and the Chief Scientific Advisor at the University of Essex, Dr Alex Quiroz Flores.  Participants included representatives from Essex police, Victim Support and the Office of the Victims’ Commissioner.

Researchers wanting to access the UK Data Service’s datasets can register online. For queries, contact the Helpdesk.