UCL Department of Geography


Publication of Consumer Data Research ebook

11 May 2018

Showcasing pioneering work of the CDRC

Publication of Consumer Data Research ebook

The Consumer Data Research Centre (CDRC) has published an open-access eBook, 'Consumer Data Research', edited by UCL Geographers Paul Longley and James Cheshire in collaboration with the University of Liverpool’s Alex Singleton.

It offers a series of innovative case studies demonstrating the wide variety of CDRC-led projects and data products in academic, commercial and government applications. They encompass such themes as migration and residential mobility, retail analysis, given and family names, ethnicity and residential segregation, and movement in cities.

Most of the data collected about citizens today are in the form of Big Data accumulated by customer-facing organisations, including smartphone logs, store loyalty card transactions, smart travel tickets, social media posts, or smart energy meter readings.

Such information differs from conventional social science data, not only in its volume, variety and speed of collection but also in its provenance and fitness for an increasing range of research. It is thus transforming the practice of social science

The book provides the first consolidated statement of the potential of such data research and offers a timely appraisal of the ways in which consumer data is challenging scientific orthodoxies.

It is published by UCL Press, and available as a free open-access edition online, accessible here: