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Article
Publication date: 26 February 2019

Malkiat Thiarai, Sarunkorn Chotvijit and Stephen Jarvis

There is significant national interest in tackling issues surrounding the needs of vulnerable children and adults. This paper aims to argue that much value can be gained…

Abstract

Purpose

There is significant national interest in tackling issues surrounding the needs of vulnerable children and adults. This paper aims to argue that much value can be gained from the application of new data-analytic approaches to assist with the care provided to vulnerable children. This paper highlights the ethical and information governance issues raised in the development of a research project that sought to access and analyse children’s social care data.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper documents the process involved in identifying, accessing and using data held in Birmingham City Council’s social care system for collaborative research with a partner organisation. This includes identifying the data, its structure and format; understanding the Data Protection Act 1998 and 2018 (DPA) exemptions that are relevant to ensure that legal obligations are met; data security and access management; the ethical and governance approval process.

Findings

The findings will include approaches to understanding the data, its structure and accessibility tasks involved in addressing ethical and legal obligations and requirements of the ethical and governance processes.

Originality/value

The aim of this research is to highlight the potential use of use new data-analytic techniques to examine the flow of children’s social care data from referral, through the assessment process, to the resulting service provision. Data held by Birmingham City Council are used throughout, and this paper highlights key ethical and information governance issues which were addressed in preparing and conducting the research. The findings provide insight for other data-led studies of a similar nature.

Details

Records Management Journal, vol. 29 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0956-5698

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