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University of Sussex academic wins ONS award recognising research for the public good

Prof Peter Dolton with last year's ONS Excellence Peer award winner, Dr Emma Turner from the University of Bristol.

A University of Sussex academic has been recognised by fellow academics and research professionals for his innovative use of data for the public good.

Peter Dolton, Professor of Economics at the University of Sussex Business School, has won the Peer Award at the Office for National Statistics (ONS) Research Excellence Awards 2019.

Professor Dolton also received a special commendation for Future Impact for his research paper Total Reward and Pension Evaluation by Occupation in the Public Sector which focusses on how major reforms to public sector pensions will financially impact workers in different roles.

The research simulates the pension wealth accumulated over the lifecycle for a representative employee in a number of specific public sector occupations including doctors, nurses, teachers, prison officers, police officers and firefighters.

Prof Dolton said: “It’s a real honour to be recognised by fellow academics and professionals for the work that I have done and just as pleasing that the potential impact that this work will have going forward has also been appreciated.

“Despite the enormous changes to public sector pension schemes in the last decade, very little is discussed publicly about this issue and the implications are understood by a very small minority of the people affected.

“I hope my research will help put this pension revolution in clear financial terms and help raise wider awareness for the public sector workers who will be affected by this.”

Frankie Kay, Interim Deputy National Statistician and Director General for Data Capability at ONS said: “All of our finalists showed the benefit of sharing data and we hope that their research goes on to help inform those in government, business and the charity sector who need reliable figures to make important decisions.”

Each year, around 400 projects are granted approval to access the secure data ONS manage for statistical research.

The ONS Research Excellence Award 2019 recognises the very best of this research, celebrating outstanding innovative research carried out using the department’s data to deliver a public benefit to the UK, whilst protecting data confidentiality.

By: Neil Vowles
Last updated: Friday, 25 October 2019

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