The Network celebrated it's first birthday in November 2009 with a survey of members views.
All members were sent a short electronic survey and 15% completed it. The responses received are summarised below.
The survey is now closed but thoughts and comments are still welcome - email firstname.lastname@example.org
(Some comments have been edited slightly to avoid individuals being identified, but otherwise they are as received).
1. How effective do you think the network has been in delivering its purpose over the past year?
40% answered 'very effective', 60% answered 'reasonably effective' with no-one saying 'not effective at all'.
"While ScotStat has been reasonably successful in widening the dialogue about statistics and methodological issues, it has not managed to achieve organic growth. It is still too reliant on the centre to drive it."
"I feel that the network has been excellent. The regular email updates on statistical releases has been really informative and the workshops were great for finding out more about statistics and also for networking."
"It's a very big purpose. I haven't been involved with all aspects, however some things (e.g. sharing resources and capacity building) have been very effectively achieved (esp. through the workshops). Am not sure that I have seen such an impact under every heading"
2. How could the network have been more effective?
"There is a need to develop local/regional champions who will organise local workshops and develop a situation where the networks activities are driven from the bottom upwards."
"Very happy with what the network has offered."
"Difficult, given limited resources."
"Not sure that I've seen any really significant input from outwith Scottish Government on uses of statistics and how these could be improved to meet user demands. Maybe an event, or discussion to focus on this would be useful."
"A more structured programme of workshops - seem to be bit ad hoc currently."
"Consider a regular network meeting to agree areas for future focus - biannual around one of workshops?"
"I've found the network very effective. The Scotstat Network has really helped to keep me in the loop on national outcomes, NPF indicators and developments with government surveys. Workshops have been really useful, well organised and well delivered."
3. Use the grid below to indicate how useful you have found various aspects of the network to date
Results (row percentages)
|Very Useful||Useful||Not useful||No experience or views|
|Accessing presentations from workshops on the website||28||50||0||22|
|Analytical Guidance Library||21||42||0||37|
|"Network News" emails||37||42||0||21|
|Links to training courses and conferences on the website||26||63||0||11|
4. If you have NOT participated in any network workshops in 2009, why was that?
33% answered "location not suitable" and 77% answered "timing not sutiable". No-one said "nothing interested me".
5. What would you like the network to do in 2010?
"More of the same."
"Continue with the good work."
"Become more extensive with a wider membership and offer lots of local opportunities for participation."
"How to use research to guide strategic policy analysis."
"Logic modelling/contribution analysis."
"Hoping it can sustain the very good opportunities provided in 2009."
"Have an event or series of workshops where the utility of statistics can be unpacked a little. This might help address:(i) limited awareness of understanding on part of PBs and councils;(ii) potential demands for statistics that are not currently produced. E.g. workshop on expenditure data, how are PESA compiled? what figures are there on local government expenditure? what dangers are there in using these figures to benchmark performance and to measure efficiency?"
"High level logic modelling/contributions analysis for SOA national outcomes."
"Consider initiatives for Capacity building in public sector bodies perhaps via CPPs."
"Keep up the good work! We have really benefited from the three workshop events we have been involved in. Many thanks."
"Continuing to offer networking opportunities."
"Continue to increase knowledge of what they use data for and what data they have."
"Continue to offer workshops and keep going with the other activities."
"More on contribution analysis."
"More workshops - they were very good."
"Discuss (critically) issues relating to performance indicators and get decision-makers to listen and get involved."
"Extend library to include examples of best practice."
"Looking at 'recession' indicators."
"More focus on the use of statistics on measuring performance - achieving change. Particularly across proffessions/sectors and/or organisations."
"More of the same please."
"Keep being as effective and responsive as you have to date! The organised events are very good. It is also good to have some SG contacts to speak to about stat/survey/resaerch issues."