One of the UK Statistics Authority’s statutory functions is to monitor the production and publication of official statistics across the UK, from collection through to dissemination. This role draws on some of the duties assigned to the Statistics Commission and to the National Statistician in 2000, as set out in the ‘Framework for National Statistics’.
The Statistics Authority can report its findings about official statistics to the person responsible for those statistics, usually the relevant departmental minister or the relevant devolved administration. This enables the Board to either comment reactively to any statistical concerns brought to its attention or proactively, for example by developing its own programme of work to fulfil this duty.
One of the Authority’s two Deputy Chairs has responsibility for promoting the production and publication of all official statistics across the UK.
Another of the Authority’s statutory functions is to prepare, adopt and publish a ‘Code of Practice for Statistics‘ (in consultation with others as appropriate), which sets out the standards that the UK Statistics Authority expects official statistics to meet. The Authority will also determine whether official statistics comply with this Code and, if so, designate them as ‘National Statistics’.
As part of this duty, the Authority must also decide whether official statistics comply with the arrangements for pre-release access, which are set out in secondary legislation – the ‘Pre-Release Access to Statistics Order 2008’.
This work will be led by the Authority’s Director General for Regulation, appointed by the non-executive members to be their principal adviser on the assessment of National Statistics. They operates in accordance with the Authority’s ‘Principles and Procedures of Assessment’ and its ‘Programme of Assessment’.