Projects ongoing

Staff from the Centre for Data Digitisation and Analysis are currently working on a number of projects, some grant funded, others on a commercial contract basis. Details of these projects are listed below. Some have their own WWW pages. Please look Services and Outputs and see how the Unit can help support your project.

14 million birth records, 4 million marriage records and 11 million death records will be processed by the Digitising Scotland project

Digitising ScotlandExciting New Research Project

The University of Edinburgh Longitudinal Study Centre – Scotland (LSCS) has received funding from the ESRC to create a multidisciplinary research database from historical vital events records. The Digitising Scotland (DS) project will digitise up to 24 million Scottish vital events record images (birthsmarriages and deaths) since 1856. This will allow research access to individual-level information on some 18 million individuals – a large proportion of those who have lived in Scotland since 1856. At the moment these records are kept as indexed images accessible from Scotland’s People, but this means that to extract data for research projects a researcher must first search for an individual record by name, and then manually transcribe the information they need themselves (eg cause of death, occupation, etc). This has made any large-scale research project impossible – a situation that the Digitising Scotland project will change.

Work Packages

The project contains 4 work packages:

  1. Digitising birth, marriages and death vital events records from 1856 to 1973.
  2. Standardising and coding occupation descriptions to the Historical International Standard Classification of Occupations (HISCO).
  3. Standardising and coding all deaths to International Classification of Disease – 10 (ICD-10).
  4. Linking address information to consistent geographies through time.

For further information please visit :-

University of Edinburgh   National Records of Scotland ESRC Logo

Top of Page

The Living Legacies 1914-18
The Living Legacies 1914-18 Engagement Centre is a focal point for connecting academic and community researchers interested in how the First World War lives on in the twenty-first century world.

The Living Legacies Engagement Centre is a UK-wide research collaboration between Queen’s University Belfast, University of Ulster, Newcastle University, Goldsmiths, University of London, National Library of Wales and National Museums Northern Ireland. The Centre is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) in partnership with the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) until December 2016.

The Centre is based at the Institute for Collaborative Research in the Humanities. At its core is a group of academics from different UK universities all researching the enduring legacies of the First World War and whose shared expertise has potential to help community-led projects achieve greater levels of impact, outreach and engagement beyond their immediate localities.

The Centre’s researchers are interested in partnering with community-based networks and projects to explore, interpret and record the 'living legacies' of the First World War. In particular, we are interested in helping communities across the UK to:
 • tell their stories and share these stories with others;
 • rediscover the forgotten First World War heritage in our landscapes;
 • find out why and where people moved as a result of the war;
 • express stories about the conflict through drama and theatre.

Living Legacies 1914-18

Top of Page

National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO)

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) is the umbrella body for the voluntary and community sectorin England. NCVO works to support the voluntary and community sector and to create an environment in which an independent civil society can flourish. NCVO has a membership of over 10,000 voluntary organisations. These range from large national bodies to community groups, volunteer centres, and development agencies working at a local level.


"CDDA have provided a first-class service for us for five years, turning charity account PDFs into useful data, which we use to produce up-to-date statistics on the UK's voluntary sector. CDDA's dedication and attention to detail have been a real asset to our project."

David Kane
Senior Research Officer, NCVO

 National Council for Voluntary Organisations - NCVO

Top of Page

Reviving the William Liddell photographic damask plates from Donaghcloney

‌Exciting New Research Project

The William Liddell archive is a collection of over 1600 glass plates used in the Jacquard damask weaving of Irish Linen. In its

In its prime William Liddell produced quality damask linen products for top hotels and the White Star line. A survey in 2007 revealed most of the industrial heritage had been sold or destroyed, but a large collection of plates were found abandoned, these have been rescued and are held at the Belfast School of Art, but due to their fragile state are inaccessible. This project will restore the plates, research the design history, generate a date base and web site, respond to the design in a contemporary context, bringing the past into the public realm. Public and community engagement will be the ultimate focus, running 3 digital road shows gathering artefacts and oral histories, supported by a series of workshops aimed at Adult outreach education. Culminating in a pop-up exhibition and full documentation of the social significance of the lost designs.

Principle Invesigator :- Patricia Belford - Senior Research Fellow

Heritage Lottery Fund (Blue)   Ulster University Logo

Top of Page

Surveying Empires

Surveying Empires is a collaborative international research project exploring the landscape legacies of the Great Trigonometrical Survey of India.

The purpose of the Surveying Empires project is to better understand the built heritage associated with the Great Trigonometrical Survey (GTS), and to raise greater awareness globally of India’s surveying heritage and history and also its international significance as ‘heritage in danger’.

The project focuses on towers constructed for the purpose of surveying and mapping India in the 19th century by the GTS. Led by George Everest in the 1820s and 1830s, teams of skilled surveyors used these towers for their trigonometrical survey work, covering the entire sub-continent with a network of ‘triangulation stations’.

Today, these GTS survey towers stand as a testament to the enterprise, determination and ingenuity of all those who mapped India two hundred years ago. Based on the research carried out through the Surveying Empires project, this web-site shows something of what survives in the landscapes of West Bengal from this huge and ambitious effort to map India.

Surveying Empires is a collaborative project between Queen’s University Belfast (UK) and the University of Calcutta (India) and benefitted from funding granted by the British Academy through its International Mobilities and Partnerships programme. The project has drawn from the expertise and support of the Centre for Data Digitisation and Analysis (CDDA) and Centre for Archaeological Fieldwork at Queen’s University Belfast, and the Department of Archaeology of the University of Calcutta.

Please click here to go to webpage

Surveying Empires

Top of Page

Young Life and Times (Northern Ireland) Survey

All too often the opinions of young people are ignored when decisions are made about many of the issues involving them.

However, the Young Life and Times Survey gives young people the chance to tell us about their experiences of school, and their views on politics, sectarianism and other social issues.

By inviting respondents to suggest topics for the next year's survey, we make sure that the issues covered are relevant to the lives of young people in Northern Ireland today.

From 1998 to 2000, Young Life and Times sought the views of all 12 to 17 year olds living in the same household as respondent to the Northern Ireland Life and Times survey.

However, in 2003, the aims and methodology of the survey were changed. From 2003 onwards, Young Life and Times will record the attitudes of 16 year olds only. Further details can be found in the technical notes of the survey.

Questions within the survey are grouped into modules. The range of modules varies from year to year.

Whether you are at school or at college, work in the media, government or voluntary sector, or whether you are just interested in what the people of Northern Ireland think about the issues of the day, we hope you find something useful in this web-site. Browse the web-site and find out.


‘I direct Young Life and Times (YLT) – an annual postal attitude survey of 16 year olds. It is in its 13th year now, which makes it one of the longest running surveys of this nature in the UK and Ireland. CDDA has been contracted to undertake the survey data digitisation for YLT for the last two years – a task which had previous been undertaken by contractors in England. YLT really benefitted from moving data digitisation and input to CDDA. Not only provide they a high data quality, follow a rigorous protocol in terms of data security and have local knowledge which improves data accuracy, but the close proximity of CDDA also meant that we saved time and any queries could be resolved face-to-face very quickly.’

Dirk Schubotz (YLT Director)

Northern Ireland Young Life and Times

Top of Page