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.

Sixth form and college student competition: deadline extended to 3 April 2022


The competition, devised with Ben Brindle, one of the UK Data Service Data Impact Fellows, asks students to compare public and media attitudes to immigration with the latest findings of data-driven academic research, and then to design a campaign to improve public understanding of the economic impacts of immigration.

Reflecting on what he aims to achieve with the competition, Ben says: “Given that the current immigration debate, both in the UK and beyond, is characterised by misinformation, I hope that the competition will lead to an improved understanding of the key debates surrounding immigration, and generate an awareness that debates in the public eye are often more complex than they are presented as being.”

Resources to help students get started

Ben has brought together a fantastic range of resources, which give students a clear overview of the topic and provide information needed to put together a compelling entry.

This includes background information on polls and surveys measuring public attitudes towards immigration, alongside selected news articles that reinforce negative perceptions of immigration. There are also examples of data-driven evidence and research, including Ben’s blog post discussing the findings of academic research on the effect of immigration on jobs and wages.

Accessible to all students no matter their existing knowledge of the topic, these resources will support both the analysis and campaign elements of the competition, providing plenty of hints and inspiration along the way.

What can students gain from taking part in the challenge?

Participating in the #ChangingPerceptionsChallenge is a great opportunity for students to get their voices heard in a key debate at the heart of contemporary society.

Combining analysis and design, the competition encourages students to develop their critical thinking skills and explore creative ways to communicate their findings. These are great skills to highlight on a CV or UCAS application.

Alongside skills development, students will have the chance to win book tokens to be shared evenly with their school or college: £200 for the winner and £100 for the runners-up.

Our judges

Ben will be joined on the judging panel by an inspiring group of experts on immigration and data-driven research and impact:

“Migration and refugee issues are only going to become more important in the decades to come, and the intersection between research, policy, communications, and public opinion is at the heart of it. I’m delighted to be a part of this competition and hope people find this intersection as exciting as I do!”

“The gap between public perceptions and what economics and evidence tell us is nowhere greater than with immigration. This competition is a great opportunity for students to do their bit to bring the two closer together.”

  • Dr Victoria Moody, Director of Research and Innovation Sector Strategy at Jisc and Co-Investigator and Deputy Director of the UK Data Service

“This is an important opportunity to tap into the perspectives and knowledge of sixth form and college students in the UK on an important issue using data and research”

The judges are looking forward to assessing the competition entries and seeing the diverse approaches students take to their analysis and campaigns. Winners will be announced in Spring 2022.

Take part now for your chance to win!

Are you a 16-18 year old UK sixth form or college student and think you can impress our competition judges? Find out all the competition entry details and good luck!

Students now have until 23:59 on Sunday 3 April 2022 to submit their entry.

Please listen to our podcast below with Ben Brindle talking about what is involved with the competition and how students can enter their submissions: