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24/09/2012
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Public attitudes to transport

The Department for Transport has used random probability Omnibus surveys run by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and National Centre for Social Research (NatCen) to measure people’s attitudes to various transport-related issues, and their experiences of different forms of transport.

Separately, the Department has also used the British Social Attitudes survey (managed by NatCen) to monitor public attitudes over the long term.

Notes and guidance

Omnibus surveys are operated by a number of social research providers. They allow clients to buy space in a ‘rolling’ public survey to ask a small set of questions for a limited time period. An Omnibus survey will typically feature a standard set of core questions that are of interest to all clients (covering key personal and household characteristics), alongside topic-specific questions funded by individual clients. They are therefore a low-cost and flexible method of running small-scale public surveys.

Omnibus surveys use stratified sampling techniques and are usually weighted to ensure that results are representative of the population at large. Both the NatCen and ONS omnibus surveys use random probability sampling (without replacement) and are conducted ‘face-to-face’ at the respondent’s household using Computer Assisted Personal Interviewing (CAPI).

Official Statistics

The attitudinal statistics collected using the ONS “Opinions” omnibus survey are Official Statistics and are produced in line with the relevant Code of Practice. Indeed, the ONS Opinions survey methodology is comparable to that of other ONS surveys whose results are published as National Statistics. However, the DfT reports from this survey have not eben put forward for National Statistics assessment.

Although they are produced to high professional standards, results from the NatCen Omnibus survey and the British Social Attitudes survey should not be considered Official Statistics. This is because substantive management of the survey, ownership of the data and (for the British Social Attitudes Survey)publication of the headline results all sit outside of government.

Pre-release access lists (Official and National Statistics only)

The lists of post holders given pre-release access to public attitudes statistics (for up to 24 hours prior to release) vary from topic to topic. Most such lists are therefore ‘one-offs’ and apply to a single release only. Pre-release access lists for releases from July 2011 onwards will be published here. Earlier pre-release access lists are available on request from the contact point below.

Browse statistical releases within this series

We are in the process of transferring previously published releases from the older version of the DfT website. Older material on public attitudes to transport issues is available on request from the contact point below. Some additional reports are also available via the National Archives website here.

Raw data available for download

Data from the ONS Opinions survey, the British Social Attitudes survey and the NatCen omnibus are deposited with the UK Data Archive.

Background and technical information on data sources

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