Don’t abuse stats during election campaign, UK Statistics Authority chair tells party leaders
David Norgrove writes to ask parties to make sure their campaign materials don’t mislead the public
David Norgrove asked party leaders to respect statistics in the run-up to the election - Photo credit: ParliamentTV
The chairman of the UK Statistics Authority has written to the leaders of the main political parties to urge them not to misrepresent statistics in the run-up to the general election on 8 JUne.
In his letter, dated 24 April, David Norgrove urged party leaders to show their “support and leadership” in ensuring that official statistics are used properly.
Norgrove, who took up the role of chairman earlier this month, noted that his predecessors Michael Scholar and Andrew Dilnot “have in the past been obliged to write publicly about the misuse of official statistics in other pre-election periods and during the EU referendum campaign”.
General election 2017: Register to Vote site pulls in 150,000 applications in a single day
Theresa May announces plan to hold early general election
Government ‘clearly failed’ to properly test Register to Vote site ahead of EU referendum
In his efforts to urge the parties to make sure they stuck to the rules, Norgrove stressed that the misuse of statistics “at any time damages the integrity of statistics, causes confusion and undermines trust”.
He said that it was in the public interest that all information is used in accordance with the principles of the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.
This includes making sure that campaigns don’t “pick out single numbers that differ from the picture painted by the statistics as a whole”.
Parties should also ensure that the statistical sources are clear and accessible to all, and that any caveats or limitations are respected.
During the EU referendum campaign, Dilnot said that Vote Leave’s assertions that the UK “sends £350m every week to Brussels” were “potentially misleading”, as well as flagging up some minor errors in the information used in the government’s leaflet about the benefits of remaining in the union.
PublicTechnology talks to the think tank’s digital and data specialist Eleonora Harwich about how AI could help eradicate disparity in the quality of healthcare and why GDS needs to focus...
Concern still mounting about ‘most disturbing issue to hit the industry for decades’
The first of a two-part recap of 2017 looks at the biggest stories and most significant developments in the first six months of the year
Devices are designed to check against national criminal and immigration databases and return results in under a minute
BT's Amy Lemberger argues that having the right security in place to protect your organisation is no longer just an option. It is a necessity.
BT brought together some their top security experts and CIOs from well known UK organisations to discuss digital transformation and the impact that it’s having on organisations