I wrote previously about standardisation of data collection – being consistent on how data is collected, but now I’ve come across an interesting issue, not HOW but WHAT data is collected.
Working with Birmingham LGBT we were trying to find data that could help them to target their support, they were particularly looking for older members of the LGBT community as these are the people that are often most in need of support.
We started looking around to see if we could find any information that gave any hint as to where to start looking – and we quickly ran into a problem that they had experienced time and time again. While age based data is widely available, data on sexual orientation, or sexual identity is much harder to find.
Because it is not uncommon for LGBT groups to encounter this problem they have started collaborating to bring useful data together on their Evidence Exchange
Any research that groups have done, or that they have found that they think is useful for others is uploaded and the stats assigned to different topics and subtopics making it easier to search.
Groups collaborating in this way are making it easier for the LGBT community to find the facts and figures they need to evidence funding bids and to support their work. But while collaboration is a good thing if there was a consistent way data was collected then there would be no need for them to duplicate work that has already been done as the answers they need would be available with everything else.