About the Project

The DataShine mapping platform is an output from an ESRC Future Research Leaders Project entitled “Big Open Data: Mining and Synthesis” (BODMAS). The overall project seeks promote and develop the use of large and open datasets amongst the social science community. A key part of this initiative is the visualisation of these data in new and informative ways to inspire new uses and generate insights. Phase one has been to create the mapping platform with data from the 2011 Census. The next phases will work on important issues such as representing the uncertainty inherent in many population datasets and also developing tools that will enable the synthesis of data across multiple sources.


James Cheshire (Principal Investigator)

James Cheshire is a Lecturer at the UCL Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis with interests in the spatial analysis and visualisation of population data. His current research focus is on the use of “big” and open datasets for the study of social science – a project funded by the ESRC Future Research Leaders Scheme. In addition, James is involved in a number of projects that relate to the increased use of quantitative data in the social sciences. He has published in a range of journals on a variety of topics including the use of cycle hire schemes, the spatial analysis of surnames and new ways to visualise population data. 

Oliver O’Brien (Researcher/Developer)

Oliver O’Brien is a researcher and software developer at the Department of Geography at UCL. He investigates and implements new ways of visualising spatial data. His research interests include online web mapping, digital cartography, spatial analysis and data visualisation, focusing particularly on transport data and London. His Bike Share Map, a product of ongoing research into the field, shows a live map of bicycle sharing systems for around a hundred cities. With James, he authors the Mapping London website which regularly features good examples of maps created of and for London, from colleagues at UCL Geography and UCL CASA, and from the online community in general. He also contributes to, and makes use of data from, the OpenStreetMap project, the Wikipedia of maps.


Created by:
Oliver O’Brien (Researcher/Developer)
Dr James Cheshire (Principal Investigator)

Created at:
University College London

Parts of the DataShine websites were funded by:
Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)

Parts of the DataShine websites were funded by:
National Records of Scotland
Scotland’s Census

Data provided by:
National Records of Scotland (Crown Copyright, OGL)
Office of National Statistics (Crown Copyright, OGL)
Ordnance Survey (Crown Copyright & Database right, OGL)
OpenStreetMap (Copyright OSM contributors, CC-By)