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The work of the research team at the IS is divided between managing analytical projects, undertaking bespoke analysis and pursuing independent research projects.
We specialise in complex research projects that often involve sourcing data from multiple systems. Over the last few years we have created a number of analytical products which have helped councils to arrive at informed decisions and harness the power of their internal data.
Our experience and expertise includes:
We produce a small number of independent research pieces or publications each year. Visit our research page to see them.
We provide the following free data and intelligence tools to support decision-making:
The CPOP tool aims to help you assess if the lives of people in your community are improving over time. It provides a set of core measures in important life outcomes including early years, older people, safer/stronger communities, health and wellbeing, and engagement with local communities. It presents a consistent basis for measuring outcomes and inequalities of outcome in your area.
This app uses the small area population project data from the National Records of Scotland to allow you to easily graph and compare future populations for multiple age groups and the resultant dependency ratio.
“Better information makes for better decisions and therefore better and cheaper services.”
Audit Commission 2009
Policies and direction based on rigorous research have the power to be transformational both in service delivery and in outcomes. Poorly constructed and misinformed conclusions, on the other hand, have the potential to lead to inappropriate provision.
We can deliver training and workshops to staff and politicians across councils to help them use evidence to make better decisions. We specialise in:
If you are interested in commissioning research or analysis, please contact the research team directly.
The Improvement Service (IS) is the national improvement organisation for local government in Scotland.
Our purpose is to help councils and their partners to improve the health, quality of life and opportunities of all people in Scotland through community leadership, strong local governance and the delivery of high quality, efficient local services.
Through a series of principles, the IS works to promote improvement in local government and among its partners to support them improve outcomes and reduce the outcome gaps within populations and within areas.
The IS delivers a range of products and services that support CPPs to build their capacity to deliver the public service reform agenda.
The IS has a non-partisan role to support all elected members in Scotland.
The Improvement Services produces a series of newsletters on a range of subjects, including myaccount, elected members, tellmescotland as well as the main IS newsletter. Subscribe on this page.