Using neighbourhood data in Understanding Society

When: Fri 20 Mar 2020 09:00 am - Fri 20 Mar 2020 04:30 pm
Where: University of Essex, Wivenhoe Park, Colchester, Essex, CO4 3SQ - View Map

Understanding Society facilitates exciting and innovative research about the UK’s society, including research into the relevance of neighbourhood and place for individual and societal wellbeing. In this introductory course, participants will gain skills in thinking about exciting research questions around “neighbourhoods” that can be addressed using Understanding Society and will be equipped with the basic tools that are involved in answering them. How much neighbourhood social capital is there in Britain and what are its individual, household and neighbourhood level correlates? How has neighbourhood social cohesion changed over time, and how does this matter? Participants will learn to navigate the Study’s extensive online resources to identify relevant study content and undertake some basic types of cross-sectional and longitudinal analyses in Stata.

The course is open to early career and postgraduate researchers from all disciplines and policy fields.

The course will be delivered as a combination of short lectures followed by practical in the computer lab. The course will be based on a series of hands-on-examples using Understanding Society neighbourhood data in Stata. There will be time for discussion and Q&A.


09.00-09.30: Registration

09.30-10.30: Understanding Society study in a nutshell (lecture)

10.30-12.30: Example 1: Using information collected in the survey

12.30-13.15: Lunch

13.15-15.00: Example 2: Using linked geographical data

15.00-15.15: Refreshments

15.15-16.15: Example 3: Exploiting change over time

16.15-16.30: Close

Course tutor

The course is developed and taught by Dr Gundi Knies, based at the Institute for Social and Economic Research.

Dr Knies is a member of the Understanding Society team and Topic Champion for Neighbourhoods on the Study’s Scientific Leadership Team. A Sociologist, Social Policy Analysist and Economist by training, she can draw on a wealth of different disciplinary approaches to undertaking innovative interdisciplinary research.

Course materials

Participants will be given handouts of the slides, exercises and Stata do-files during the course. Electronic versions will be made available for download afterwards.

Course Prerequisites

Participants are expected to have a basic working knowledge of Stata. Otherwise, participants may end up spending more time learning Stata than the complexities of using neighbourhood data in Understanding Society.

Participants not familiar with Stata commands are strongly encouraged to familiarise themselves with the course materials provided in the Introduction to Understanding Society training course. Previous course materials are available online and the Understanding Society team also host the Introduction to Understanding Society course in the two days before this workshop – booking information is here.