Felix Ritchie

C U R R I C U L U M   V I T A E
Individual Profile
Good humoured and enthusiastic team leader and team player. Thrives in a challenging and dynamic environment and takes pride in delivering high quality work to time and budget. Enjoys a role with variety and that involves customer interfacing. Professional, experienced, flexible, dedicated and possesses a 'can do' attitude that focuses on solving problems and overcoming challenges. Has a reputation for generating innovative solutions to long-standing problems.
PhD Economics; MSc Economics, BSc Economics and Computer Science (Hons., 1st class)
Current activity
Academic economist focusing on the practical application of economics to the management of business and government. Particular specialisms in government statistics, low pay, and data access and confidentiality.
Director of Bristol Economic Analysis
Key skills
Operations and delivery
  • Formal project management training
  • Experienced (private and public sector) technical and business consultant
  • Economics, econometrics and qualitative research skills:
    • Panel data
    • Labour markets, particularly in relation to earnings
    • Alcohol and drug use and abuse
    • Statistical coding and evaluation in Stata and GAUSS
  • Data management, security and confidentiality:
    • Design of systems and processes
    • Evaluation of environments, training and security
    • Negotiation with and advising of stakeholders
    • Creator of 'Five Safes' (aka VML Security Model), 'principles-based output SDC', 'safe statistics', 'active researcher management'
  • Consulting lecturer on GAUSS, STATA and panel data econometrics
  • High-level IT design and management; web design, including Cardiff Wine Tasting Circle
  • Professional experience of presenting to technical, non-technical and student audiences
  • Designer of training programmes in both professional (CPD) and academic environments
  • Language skills: tourist French and Italian, eclectic German; some Polish and Spanish
Research grants and funding
  • Contributor to EU-funded projects on productivity and the new economy, data access, indicators of competitiveness
  • UK lead for EU research grants on data access, data warehousing, statistical disclosure control
  • ONS lead for external funding of academic access to research data
  • ONS lead for various reports on data quality for other government departments
Since 2012 (UWE/Trig Consulting):
  • Led four projects (competitive tender) for Low Pay Commission (2012-2015; see publications: Fry & Ritchie, Ritchie & Whittard, Drew et al)
  • Led project (competitive tender) for ESRC impact evaluation for WERS/ESS (2012-2013; see publications: Drew, King and Ritchie)
  • Led project (competitive tender) for Wellcome Trust project on data linking ((2014-2015; see publications: Green et al)
  • Co-applicant on two projects (competitive tender) for Department for Business Industry and Skills (2014-2019)
  • Led project (single tender) for Office for National Statistics (2014-2015)
  • Internationally recognised expert on data access and security: personal invitations to Canada, US, NZ, Japan, China, Germany, Australia, OECD and Eurostat.
  • Funded consultant to the UK Administrative Data Service (2013-2018)
  • Funded consultant to Eurostat prime contractor (2013-2018; three projects to date)
  • Reviewer for UK RDCs 'Accredited researcher' training
  • External auditor for data integration projects in various countries
  • Occasional referee for peer-reviewed journals and funding bodies including Economic and Social Research Council
  • Expert witness (civil proceedings)
Current role
06.12 -
Associate Professor in Applied Economics
University of the West of England, Bristol
  • Teaching in applied economics
  • Research in labour economics, data security, use and evaluation of government data, practical application of economics in business
  • Consultancy in offical statistics, confidentiality and data access
  • Appointed Interim Director of Bristol Economic Analysis in September 2015
02.12 -
Consultant in applied microeconomics, econometrics, data, and IT
Trig Consulting, London and Cardiff
  • Non-economic consultancy
03.12 -
Visiting Fellow
WISERD, Cardiff University
  • Visiting researcher with a particular interest in quantitative and qualitative methods for social sciences
Most recent position
02.05 - 02.12
Head of Microdata Analysis and User Support; Deputy Head of Economic Interpretation
Office for National Statistics, Newport, South Wales
Key responsibilities:
  • Development of Virtual Microdata Laboratory (including long term strategic planning)
  • Development of microdata resources within ONS, within government and in academia
  • Development of Longitudinal Data Strategy
  • Development of policy for confidential data access
  • Support for microanalysis (economic, social, statistical) across and outside ONS
  • Management and leadership of Tourism Intelligence Unit
  • Management of New Economy/Economic Methods workstreams (from October 09)
  • Training and development of economists professional group
  • International representation as UK expert on data, security and research policies
  • General economic research and technical consultancy within ONS
  • Divisional finance
Key achievements
  • Took the VML from ONS' particular solution to the international benchmark for policy and practice on access to confidential data.
  • Developed the 'principles-based' model, guidelines and frameworks, and practical approaches to data access widely adopted as best practice, including the 'VML Security Model', the 'Data Access Spectrum' and 'principles-based output SDC'
  • Internationally recognised expert on use of microdata, data access, disclosure control.
  • Produced innovative research on low-pay, ONSí candidate for Civil Service Excellence Awards (Use of Evidence).
  • Successfully relocated the Longitudinal Data Strategy work to Newport, exceeding required savings and changing perception of ONS as an active strategist rather than a passive administrator of funds.
  • Lead the development of a training programme for ONS economists seen as a model for other professional groups.
  • Proposed the use of and commissioned microdata analyses to complement and challenge macroeconomic aggregates
Previous experience
11.02 - 01.05
Economic Adviser; Head of Business Data Linking
Office for National Statistics, London
  • Conceived, designed, managed and developed the Virtual Microdata Laboratory (VML) to provide access for research purposes to sensitive data from ONS and other government departments
  • Technical papers on data release and disclosure control, impact of weighting on productivity estimates
07.01 - 11.02
IT Consultant/Econometrician
Trig Consulting, London and Camberley
  • Independent IT consultant specialising in internet communications, web conferencing, streaming media, online learning. Tasks and responsiblities include web design and programming, client liaison, project specification and management.
  • Econometric and economic consultant and trainer, specialising in longitudinal data, large datasets and econometric teaching.
01.00 - 06.01
Operations Manager
Virtual Environments International, Oxford (now in liquidation)
  • Primary technical consultant
  • Management of technical and design teams; occasional programming and design
  • Consultancy and implementation on all webcasting and streaming media projects
  • Pre- and post-sales consultancy, account management
  • Drafting of user guides and other technical documents
  • General supervision of internal operational issues and business activity
10.98 - 09.99
Head of Computer Department
IZA (Institute for the Study of Labour), Bonn, Germany
  • Designed and managed the implementation of external access and information management strategies
  • Designed, administrated and evaluated the physical network
  • Managed data resources; and provided general economic and statistical advice
  • Managed and responsible for the equipment and training budget (£150-200k p.a.)
04.98 - 09.98
Scottish Office Agriculture Environment and Fisheries Department, Edinburgh
  • Econometric modelling of fish stocks; evaluation of land reform proposals
  • General advice on economic and statistical issues
09.93 - 12.97
Department of Economics, University of Stirling
  • Research: statistics, computational aspects of large databases, labour economics
  • Teaching (BSc and MSc): mathematics, general theory; labour markets: environmental and energy issues
  • Devised and delivered professional training in IT systems and programming
  • Consultancy projects for Department of Employment included the design of remote access strategy for DoE databases and the consequent programming to implement this
  • Co-ordinated and managed the research computers shared among eight university departments spread across Scotland (budget c. £70,000)
  • PhD Thesis: Accessing the New Earnings Survey Panel Dataset: new techniques and applications
    Used the panel features of the data to develop efficient unrestricted longitudinal estimators, applying the results to the UK labour market; developed the accompanying software
05.89 - 10.90
Generation and system studies analyst
Electricity purchasing department, Southern Electric plc, Maidenhead
  • Analysis of electricity purchase-contracts and advice to contract negotiation team
  • Designed, built and maintained a purchase cost forecasting model
1985 - 1989
Arena Software Limited, Cambridge
  • Team design and programming of PC-based office management system
  • Some user installation and technical support
1988 BSc Economics and computer science (1st class), University of Stirling
Winner of Adam Smith Economics Prize
Final year dissertation: The Impact of the 'Big Bang' on the London Stock Exchange
1991 MSc Economics, University of Glasgow
1995 PhD Economics, University of Stirling
Personal details
(+44) 7909 528 136
Email: fr_cv@trigconsulting.co.uk

This page last edited 27th July 2015

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