Resource enables council to assess service satisfaction

Researchers at City University London have teamed up with Leicestershire County Council (LCC) to create an online resource that enables staff and citizens to better understand public satisfaction with local services and amenities.

Using a combination of interactive maps and graphics, the authority can now tailor its services according to feedback from its residents.

LCC is the first UK local authority to use this approach. It has been piloted using a survey of 8,000 citizens, which asked how happy they were with 57 aspects of life in the county and the services they are offered by the council, as well as the emergency services and the NHS.

A new website, developed by City’s giCentre, allows employees and the public to interpret the survey results from the survey using data visualisation – presenting and providing access to the data through graphical means.

Dr Aidan Slingsby, Willis Research Fellow at City, said: ’The volume and complexity of data generated by resident surveys means that it is difficult to analyse in its raw format. Using data visualisation to interpret the results, however, enables citizens to explore them in more depth than usually provided.’

An array of information about Leicestershire can be explored – from how satisfied residents are with the quality of refuse and recycling collections to whether they feel well informed about how their council tax is spent.

The degree to which responses vary among groups of people with particular characteristics or from particular places can also be considered, for example, comparing the views of 66-75 year olds to those of 18-25 year olds, contrasting the opinions of people who have lived in the same place for more than 20 years with those of recent arrivals, or seeing whether people in one district are more satisfied than those in another.

The website can be explored at http://www.lsr-online.org/placesurvey.html.