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Analysis - Quick start guide

Matthew Hornsby -

How to get started straight away with Analysis

So, you need to analyse your consultation - where to start? There's a lot of material here on our support site that should be helpful. In particular, we've created a set of three guides that should help you through the process. The first article, which is linked here, tells you how to design your survey well to do the most effective analysis - hopefully you may have already seen it! The second describes how to manage the analysis process itself, and the third talks about reporting your results back.


Let's jump in at the second stage of the process - you have some responses already and you want to analyse them. There are various ways of looking at the responses. For a run down of what the different analysis options are on the consultation dashboard, see here.

Responses organised by question

When you begin analysis, it's likely that your first port of call will be the 'Responses organised by question' screen.

screenshot of responses organised by question link


This screen lets you view how each question in your survey has been answered by all respondents - there's an introduction to using it here. Selecting the question you are interested in will show you data for how that question has been answered, with a visual representation in the form of a chart. 

 Screenshot of question chart and data table in responses by question


To add another layer to your analysis, you can use the filtering and grouping tools, which allow you to cross-tabulate responses to one question against the way respondents answered another question. Filtering lets you see only the responses that answered in a particular way to another question. Grouping shows you all responses to that question, but it will indicate which way they answered this in relation to the other selected question.


Let's imagine that Question 1 asks "Where do you live?" and offers the answer options North, East, South and West,

and Question 2 asks "How would you rate the service?" and offers the answer options Good, Average and Poor.

Filtering by question allows you to extract all respondents who have given a specific answer to that question e.g. If you go into Question 1, you can then filter to get only those respondents who answered 'North'.

Grouping allows you to see the breakdown of responses to one question in relation to the answers to another e.g. If you go into Question 1 and then group the answers with those from Question 2, you will see a table of percentages and response numbers for all combinations answer options. This would show you what number of respondents live in the North and also rate the service as Good, or live in the South and think the service is Poor - and so on.

It is possible to include or exclude 'not answered' from the charts or graphs, which you can read more about in our article detailing that option.

Viewing responses by respondent 

When looking at a question in responses organised by question, selecting a particular answer will take you through to 'responses by respondent', and will show you the individual respondents who answered that way.

Screenshot of the list of responses in responses by question


Selecting the response ID (eg. ANON-A2TR-R4U5-9) will show you that individual's response to the entire consultation.

Screenshot of individual response view

You now have the option, as an analyst, to add some interpretation to the response. At the top of the response summary, select 'edit analysis info for this response'. This takes you through to "Analyse Responses". You can then go through all of the questions the respondent answered, and add analysis in two ways: by adding text into the box under each question, or by tagging responses.

Screenshot of single question view in analysis and where to add analyst notes and tags

There are two guides on our system on tagging (you may call this coding). The first explains what tagging is, and how it can fit in to your analysis process; the second takes you through the practicalities of the process. Essentially, it is a method for changing qualitative data (generally text added by users) into quantitative data - numbers and percentages.


Analyse Responses

If your consultation gathered qualitative data, and you want to be thorough about analysis, the 'Analyse Responses' screen will be useful to you (found on the Consultation Dashboard).

It allows you to go through responses one by one to enable you to read them and fully, clean and code the data.

To help your workflow, you will also be able to tick off responses once you have analysed them, by checking the box next to "Is analysis of this response complete?" in the header.

analyse responses screen with notes and tags added 

Exporting responses

In some cases, you may find it easier to export data from Citizen Space so that you can use other analytical tools, particularly if you are experienced in analysis using the likes of Excel or SPSS. You can turn the response data from your consultation into an .xlsx file by following the steps described here. There are a couple of things about the way that data is exported that it's good to be aware of - these are covered on this page.

You can take exports of the full data set, or more granular exports by drilling down into the data using the responses organised by question section, filtering and grouping, as explained above.


Hopefully the above is enough to get you started. To take the next step, we recommend you have a look at our more detailed guides to analysis.


1.     Preparation and survey design
2.     Getting to know your data
3.     Producing analytical reports