Our research


We undertake multidisciplinary research on issues that affect all our lives: child development, education, social mobility, health and wellbeing, families and family life, and ageing. We also conduct research into survey methods, and applied statistical methods.

Our applied statistical methods programme specialises in methods for dealing with attrition, causal identification, and data harmonisation.

Our research helps tackle some of the key challenges we face in our society today.

To find out more, explore the links below.

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Initial findings from the Next Steps Age 25 Sweep

The Next Steps Age 25 Sweep has provided valuable insights into the lives of young adults today. A total of 7,707 cohort members took part at this age, enhancing the study’s value as a resource for researchers to gain an…


Educational and occupational aspirations of young people: influences and outcomes

Using data from the Millennium Cohort Study (MCS), Next Steps, and the National Child Development Study (NCDS), this project investigated the role of aspirations on social reproduction and social mobility across the divides of gender, ethnicity, disability and social class….


Parental working hours and the rising prevalence of obesity over time: a cross-cohort analysis

This project aimed to investigate how changes in parental employment have affected childhood weight and if/how this effect has been changing over the last five decades. The project was part of the Cross Cohort Research Programme.


Intergenerational influences on physical activity

This project investigated the influence of work and family status on exercise and sedentary behaviour in childhood and adult life, taking account of intersections with socio-economic position and gender. The project was part of the Cross Cohort Research Programme.


Alcohol use across the life course: links with health and wellbeing

This research project used evidence from all four of our cohort studies to investigate the short- and long-term health impacts of alcohol. The project was part of the Cross Cohort Research Programme.


Does the language of 11-year-olds predict their future?

For this project the research team used machine learning tools to explore whether essays written by 11-year-olds in 1969 provided clues to their economic status, physical activity, health, and cognitive function in later life.


Childhood mental health trajectories and lifetime consequences: a cross-cohort programme of work

Drawing on data from all four of our cohort studies, this project examined young people’s mental health trajectories today in the context of previous generations. The project was part of the Cross Cohort Research Programme.


Parental wealth in childhood and its relationship with children’s development and predictors of wealth in adult life

Using data from three of our cohort studies, this project aimed to understand how parents’ long-term financial position shapes their children’s outcomes from an early stage. This was part of the Cross Cohort Research Programme.


Social mobility mechanisms and consequences

This project provided empirical evidence on curricula delivery variation in the UK and institutional differences through analysis of Next Steps and linked National Pupil Database data. This was part of our Cross Cohort Research Programme.


Cross Cohort Research Programme

Incorporating seven projects, this programme explored two key themes which are both central to government policy: healthy lifestyles and the transmission of advantage and disadvantage from one generation to the next.


What works for wellbeing cross-cutting capabilities evidence programme

Research using longitudinal data is able to provide invaluable insights into how as a society we can work together to improve our quality of life. This research project included an analysis of how wellbeing and mental health have changed across generations and…


In-work poverty and retirement attitudes among a cohort born in 1958

The aim of this project was to explore retirement-related attitudes, aspirations, expectations, and plans for retirement among adults in their mid to late 50s.

Contact us

Centre for Longitudinal Studies
UCL Social Research Institute

20 Bedford Way
London WC1H 0AL

Email: clsfeedback@ucl.ac.uk