We said in the Scottish Executive Statistical Plan 2000-2001 , released as a consultation document in April, that we were undertaking a review of our dissemination of statistics. We invited comment on several options for change which we were considering. One of these was a proposal to develop a new volume of social statistics to complement Scottish Economic Statistics . Between them, these would cover the material in the existing compendium, the Scottish Abstract of Statistics , which would be discontinued.
Respondents to the consultation overwhelmingly supported this change. We are accordingly proceeding with the preparation of the new volume, to be called "Scottish Social Statistics", which will be published early in 2001. It will present a wide range of information on life in Scotland, using a format which combines tables and graphs with a extensive text. This is in line with the second proposal we made in the plan, to introduce a new style of publication which provides more commentary on the statistics and their policy context, which respondents also favoured.
There will be no further editions of the Scottish Abstract. The material which it contained is already publicly available in a variety of paper and electronic publications.
We remain committed to making statistics available as quickly as possible in forms which users find useful. The third proposal in the plan was to enhance the information on the Scottish Executive website to include more detailed tables which have previously been available only on request. We have begun to take this forward with the addition of a range of economic statistics, including local authority profiles.