Researcher Development Initiative (RDI), 2005 - 2010

Geo-Refer 2: Meeting Community-Specific Research Needs in Geographical Referencing

01/02/08 - 31/12/08


This project was a continuation and development of the first Geo-Refer RDI award. The Geo-Refer projects addressed frequently-encountered challenges such as linking and mapping datasets with one or more geographical reference codes such as postcodes, census and administrative area codes. The aim of the second project was to further develop the Geo-Refer online training resources and in particular to customise the resources and offer them to researchers in specific areas by working with partner organizations such as the ESRC Census programme and SASPAC software consortium. Geographical referencing challenges particularly face those working with census datasets and in planning and local government settings, hence these were major foci of the project. Training was also provided to a range of young social science researchers who were not geographers and therefore did not have previous experience of geographical information systems. An initial aim had been to develop resources specifically in collaboration with a health research group but health researchers attended each of the other events. Two workshops were run for census audiences; for a local government/SASPAC user audience; to young researchers at the annual autumn school of the ESRC National Centre for Research Methods and to a general research audience at the ESRC Research Methods Festival in 2008.


All the online materials from both projects are available at Training workshops and presentations given; online resources completed and all materials from both Geo-Refer projects transferred into ESRC ReStore repository site at, including course materials.


Principal Investigator: Professor David Martin, University of Southampton
Co-Investigators: Ms Samantha Cockings, University of Southampton,

Mr Samuel Leung, University of Southampton

Contact Details

Professor David Martin, University of Southampton

Tel: 023 8059 3808