Equality Data Improvement Programme (EDIP) project board minutes: December 2021

Minutes from the meeting of the project board held on 15 December 2021.

Attendees and apologies


Scottish Government

  • Audrey MacDougall (AM), Chief Social Researcher (Chair)
  • Roger Halliday (RH), Chief Statistician
  • Jon Hunter (JH), Statistician – Equality Analysis Team
  • Maisy Best (MB), Social Researcher – Equality Analysis Team
  • David Holmes (DH), Directorate for Chief Economist
  • Jenny Kemp, Inclusion and Human Rights Directorate
  • Trevor Owen (TO), Directorate for Equality, Inclusion and Human Rights
  • Nanjika Nasiiro (NN), Equality, Inclusion and Human Rights Directorate


  • Sarah Munro, Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)
  • Duncan Buchanan, Public Health Scotland
  • Emily Lynch, Improvement Service


  • Liz Hawkins (LH), Senior Principal Researcher, Equality and Social Justice Analysis
  • Nick Bland, Equality, Inclusion and Human Rights Directorate
  • Lesley Crozier, Scottish Council’s Equality Network
  • Andrew Fraser, Public Health Scotland
  • Alan White, Non-Departmental Public Bodies Equality Forum (NDPB Equality Forum)
  • Steven Reid, NDPB Equality Forum
  • Mark McAllister, COSLA

Items and actions


AM welcomed attendees to the meeting and invited introductions.

Following introductions, AM summarised the agenda for the meeting - to update on progress, to discuss the Equality Data Audit and summary of race data, and to discuss the ONS Inclusive Data Taskforce.

AM confirmed that minutes from the previous meeting held on 27 October 2021 have been agreed and will shortly be published on the gov.scot website.

Progress update

JH provided an overview of the Highlight Report (paper one), including actions currently underway, ongoing and not yet started. JH asked Project Board members to disseminate the good practice case studies and the email requesting case study examples of how equality data has been used to inform services to their networks.

Attendees provided positive feedback on the breadth of work delivered.

TO noted that the Scottish Government’s Mainstreaming and Strategy Unit were positive about the case studies, and flagged the need to disseminate these further to ensure maximum impact. TO additionally noted the Mainstreaming and Strategy Unit’s interest in the National Performance Framework project.

TO highlighted that the Mainstreaming and Strategy Unit is happy to engage further on plans to consult with stakeholders during the development of the next Equality Evidence Strategy.

RH noted that the case studies do not focus on key statistical producers, such as Scottish Government, and suggested further engaging with senior leaders to ensure that the EDIP drives change.

AM suggested engaging with Scottish ministers early in 2022 to understand their views on data, including what they want and need from equality data and any gaps. Attendees were supportive of this suggestion.

The importance of joining up with PHS in terms of engagement with the general public was noted. AM suggested that PHS colleagues provide an update on their planned activity at an upcoming EDIP Project Board meeting.

Equality data audit and overview of race data

MB provided an overview of progress on the Equality Data Audit, next steps and key findings from the summary of data on race (paper two).

AM agreed with the suggestion to provide the Project Board with further information about the datasets that are currently publishing data on race to understand the granularity of the published breakdowns.

Attendees highlighted a need to consider datasets that are currently collecting protected characteristic data but not publishing this data, and to understand what is required to enable publication (i.e. the “route to green”). Attendees suggested publishing this data on the Equality Evidence Finder.

Attendees agreed that it would be helpful for the Equality Analysis team to provide the Project Board with further brief summaries of the data collected and published on the other protected characteristics based on the Audit returns. Attendees agreed with DH’s suggestion that these summaries should be shared with the SG Internal Analysts Network to inform the production of improvement plans.

TO highlighted a need to consider the strategic drivers in relation to the protected characteristics, including that policy professionals are aware of where the data gaps are and working closely with their analytical teams to ensure this is captured in improvement plans.

TO also highlighted a risk in terms of different ASDs engaging with the same stakeholders, and the need to ensure stakeholders are not overburdened. TO suggested coordinating engagement, perhaps thematically to minimise the burden on stakeholders. 

Guidance on publication was highlighted as a potentially useful area, which could potentially be produced in collaboration with PHS. AM suggested discussing barriers to publication with analysts and potential solutions, as this could be fed into guidance.

ONS inclusive data taskforce

JH presented slides on the ONS Inclusive Data Taskforce and commonalities with the EDIP work plan (paper three).

There was no further discussion of this item.

AOB and close

AM thanked all for attending and for their input in the meeting.


  • project board members to disseminate the published case studies of good practice on equality data collection and use in the public sector to their networks
  • project board members to disseminate the email requesting case study examples on how equality data helped drive changes in policy development or service design to their networks
  • SG to further engage with senior leaders within SG to ensure the maximum impact of EDIP actions on practice among the analytical professions
  • SG Equality Analysis team to consider engaging with ministers to gather their views on equality data
  • SG Equality Analysis team to provide brief overviews of the data collected and published about other protected characteristics based on the Equality Data Audit returns
  • SG Equality Analysis team to review datasets where data on race is currently published to understand the granularity of the published breakdowns
  • SG Equality Analysis team to issue guidance to analysts producing improvement plans to ensure they consider datasets where data is currently collected but is not currently published, and to ensure analytical areas are not overburdening the same stakeholder groups when producing the improvement plans


  • highlight report
  • equality data audit and overview of data on race

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