Bennett Institute for Applied Data Science Pioneering the better use of data, evidence and digital tools in healthcare and policy

We are the Bennett Institute for Applied Data Science in the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences at the University of Oxford.

We take huge datasets and turn them into traditional academic research papers; but we also build live, interactive data-driven tools and services for everyone to use.

We are a mixed team of software developers, clinicians and academics; we pool skills, knowledge, and best practice from each of these three disciplines.

We use modern, open methods, sharing all analysis and platform code online to support reproducibility, trust, and efficient re-use.

When we encounter technical, regulatory, or organisational blockers to the better use of data, we don’t give up: we share practical policy insights, to help keep things moving for everyone.

Latest from the blog

  1. STAR-PUs - should we still be using them?

    In this blog we explain some of the issues with using STAR-PUs and ask for your input on how we should use them in future.

  2. OpenPrescribing Winter 2023/2024 Newsletter

    This newsletter contains all the latest updates from OpenPrescribing

  3. Research Integrity Update - Feb 2024

    Details on two new papers from the Bennett Institute Research Integrity Team.

  4. PINCER: Monitoring medication safety throughout the COVID-19 pandemic using OpenSAFELY

    Here we describe some of our recent work investigating the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on safe prescribing using a set of quality assured indicators across 57 million patients’ records in England

  5. Spot the difference. Part 2: Analytic Choices

    In the second of a two-part blog we explain why OpenPrescribing figures don’t always match with other prescribing data resources, due to differences in how data is presented.

  6. Spot the difference. Part 1: Source Datasets

    In the first of a two-part blog we explain why OpenPrescribing figures don’t always match with other prescribing data resources, due to differences in the data source.

View more blog posts →

More than ever before, we now have access to vast amounts of data. We have a responsibility to use, analyse, develop and apply this data in an ethical way to promote change for good — with an emphasis on targeting the right kind of growth and achieving levelling up in society.

Peter Bennett

The founding of the Bennett Institute will allow for more collaboration and flexibility, to respond quickly to global health emergencies and policy challenges alike. It's particularly exciting to continue our work on data outside of medicine, across the broader policy space.

Ben Goldacre

The experience of the pandemic has demonstrated the centrality of both data and evidence, not only in shaping sound government policies, but also in improving public health outcomes. Ben Goldacre and his team have shown just how important universities have been in contributing to the nation's health and well-being.

Louise Richardson, Vice-Chancellor

The multidisciplinary DataLab team led by Ben Goldacre, have pioneered the use of routine data in novel and impactful ways on clinical care and policy, attracting this most generous donation from Peter Bennett. Their OpenPrescribing platform is used by very large numbers of clinical practitioners and NHS providers to improve prescribing practice. Very rapidly during the pandemic, the team delivered the world’s largest routine clinical dataset OpenSAFELY that helps answer key answers to how we better protect the public from the impacts of COVID-19.

Professor Richard Hobbs