The 2021 census asked people whether they were working and about their occupation and employment history. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) uses this data to classify people into a socio-economic status category.

Across England and Wales, one third (33%) of adults were in “managerial, administrative and professional occupations”, making this the most common category.

The second most common category was “routine and manual occupations” (29% of adults), followed by “intermediate occupations” (22%).

How is socio-economic status measured?

The ONS’s classification system is called the National Statistics Socio-economic Classification. In England and Wales, all usual residents aged 16 and over were coded to one of the following broad categories:

  • Managerial, administrative and professional occupations
  • Intermediate occupations
  • Routine and manual occupations
  • Full-time students
  • Never worked and long-term unemployed.

A slightly more detailed breakdown is also available and shown in our dashboard below.

The data reflects the population in constituencies on Census Day, 21 March 2021. Because the census data was collected while Covid-19 restrictions were in place, there are limitations to it:

  • Many people were on furlough at the time. Respondents were asked to fill in the census according to their usual occupation when not on furlough, but some people may have missed this guidance.
  • The census counts students at their term-time address, but the ONS says there is “some evidence of changes” to the recorded term-time number because of the pandemic.

Explore constituency data

Use the dropdown menu below to select the constituency you’re interested in and view statistics on the population by ethnic group.

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Download all data in Excel (4.3 MB)

If you would like to access this information in an alternative format please email papers@parliament.uk and we will review your request.


Can this data be compared with the 2011 Census results?

Changes in the way that occupations are classified mean socio-economic data from the 2021 Census are not comparable with data from the 2011 Census.

Sources

ONS, 2021 Census, Table TS062; Commons Library calculations

Data updates

The 2021 Census is currently the only source of constituency-level data on this topic, which means that there aren’t any updates planned for the near future.

2021 census results and analysis

Constituency data and analysis on the 2021 census results from the Commons Library.

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