Benefits of the Euredit project

EUREDIT contributes to the IST programme objectives by supporting European policy-oriented objectives, especially the support for these provided by socio-economic data. EUREDIT will provide a significant advance in the quality of the methodologies and techniques that underpin data gathering in pursuit of these objectives. In turn, this helps improve the quality of decision-making based on socio-economic research data at all levels and ultimately better services for the European citizen.

The EUREDIT project also contributes to the objectives of CPA4: "New indicators and statistical methods". EUREDIT will develop, evaluate and disseminate new tools aimed at improving the quality of statistical data through improved data editing and imputation. These tools will enhance the collection of statistical data by improving robustness against errors and omissions. The tools will be evaluated across a wide range of data sources and structures representing the diversity of data found in European National Statistics Offices and in business. The best-performing methods for different kinds of data will be identified. Project standards will be adopted which specify how the quality of experimental results in data editing and imputation should be measured. The methods to be investigated are expected to extend existing statistical concepts, making them more widely applicable to the growing diversity of data sources in the changing global environment. The project will also establish a framework guiding the application of data editing and imputation techniques in statistical and other applications.

In order for the European Community to maintain and enhance its present strong position in the world economy, it is of vital importance to continuously monitor the economy of the Community and its member states. Both politicians and business managers need detailed information about the economy on which to base their decisions. Likewise, it is of vital importance for policy makers to have access to high-quality social information, e.g. information about the environment and information about the health of the inhabitants in a specific region. Such information guides politicians and business managers in making well-informed decisions. Without such information they would have little information on which to base their policies.

Eurostat, individual NSIs, and businesses fulfil very important roles in providing valuable information about both the economic and social aspects of society. To achieve these roles they need to provide detailed high-quality data.

EUREDIT also addresses (indirectly) sustainable development and consumer protection policy developments by underpinning the technological advances necessary to produce statistical data of the highest quality, in support of these policies.

EUREDIT brings together NSIs, SMEs and universities with different problems, experience and knowledge. The expertise of different partners is highly complementary, and includes software development, production and sales, applications and theoretical expertise over a range of novel computing methods (e.g. neural networks), collecting, managing and processing statistical data, expertise in statistical methodologies, and applications, and expertise in dissemination and exploitation of RTD results.

Important economic and social decisions are made on the basis of statistical information collected by NSIs and businesses in Europe, for example in determining interest rates or monitoring social exclusion. However if there are errors in such data or some of the data are missing then the quality of those decisions will be impaired and society will suffer as a consequence. The Commission has long recognised the importance of statistics as demonstrated by the existence of Eurostat. EUREDIT aims to improve data quality through finding the best methods for detection and correction of data errors and imputing the missing information appropriate for each of the diverse types of data found in the Community.

Community social objectives such as, enterprise policy, employment, public health, education and training policy areas are all beneficiaries of improved statistical data to support policy and decision-making. Statistics concerning natural resources and environmental data will also benefit from the results of the EUREDIT project. The project is expected to lead to greater standardisation in the way NSIs handle economic and social data, and to improve the quality of such data.

The inclusion of real datasets within the project will ensure that the techniques and software produced will have real value to end-users and will be in a state that will readily lead to exploitation.

In recent years there has been rapid growth within the areas of data mining and financial applications as well as more traditional areas such as market research. The techniques and software developed in the project will be of considerable potential value within all these areas.