Solar System of Statistics

The Solar System of Statistics is an attempt to visualise the array of statistical datasets published by GSS and ONS along with their relationships between each other.

The aim is to provide an overview of what data is available that might be comparable, such that end users might bring together data from more than one dataset and investigate relationships and correlations that are not evident when considering singular datasets.

Government Statistical Service

Official statistics produced by UK government departments, devolved administrations and non-crown bodies are intended to be published using the "Whitehall" software on

An administrative user of Whitehall is able to download metadata about the published statistical datasets as a CSV file. This has been used as a seed to build a snapshot list of official statistics for April 2015 to March 2016. This list has been further refined by asking the relevant organisations for verification and other details.

The list is currently curated as a Google spreadsheet and manually annotated with tags/topics and other metadata about the source datasets. The result is periodically transformed into structured (RDF) data that can be:

Office for National Statistics

  • WDA / API
  • Python script to extract lists of economic, social and census ONS datasets and assign "topics" to each dataset
  • Results collated as JSON data and fed to D3 based visualisation using force-directed placement.