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Our longitudinal future – providing robust evidence for policy across the life course, from newborns right through to older age

Blog Editor, IOE Digital19 May 2018

Generation Gifted: the statistical data behind the personal stories

Blog Editor, IOE Digital22 February 2018

 
Heather Joshi
While personal stories contain a depth of detail that cannot be collected on a grand scale, statistical evidence provides the background against which exceptional cases can be seen in wider perspective. BBC2’s ‘Generation Gifted’ documentary series is following six teenagers, selected at age 13 as having exceptional promise despite exceptionally difficult home backgrounds. The intention is to follow them until they are at least 16 and take their GCSEs.
The series not only shines a spotlight on the obstacles to social mobility, but it also helps illustrate a reason for having large-scale longitudinal studies, such as those within the CLOSER consortium. These have been a major source of evidence on the inequality of life chances between children born to rich and poor parents. They put numbers to the extent of social mobility (more…)

Disadvantage and worklessness: a longitudinal perspective

Blog Editor, IOE Digital19 April 2017

Rob Davies is Public Affairs Manager for CLOSER, the UK longitudinal studies consortium funded by the ESRC and the Medical Research Council. CLOSER brings together eight biomedical and social longitudinal studies, with participants born as early as the 1930s to the present day.
Before I worked for CLOSER I helped run a charity supporting vulnerable people with different needs, including addictions, mental health problems, debt or homelessness. I saw first-hand the damaging effects of these complex issues and the barriers people face in their attempts to get back to work and take advantage of opportunities many of us take for granted.
Read more on ESRC Blog: Disadvantage and worklessness: a longitudinal perspective

International Women's Day: we cannot take progress for granted

Blog Editor, IOE Digital8 March 2017

Heather Joshi.
Is the glass half full or half empty? On International Women’s Day, here are some findings from our research. They point to progress, it’s true, but also to persistent inequality between men and women.
The good news is that over time the average pay gap has been reducing. For those aged under 30, it’s now narrow, thanks to the way women have increasingly been matching, if not overtaking, men in education. This progress should show through as 30-somethings get on and get older.
But that’s to come (perhaps). As for now, there remains disparity between men and women in mid life. Women of equal education and experience are not equally paid. Pay gaps become earnings gaps and across women’s lifetimes they are magnified because men work longer hours and spend more time in paid employment, with implications for pensions and the (more…)

Our 6th form research analysts

Blog Editor, IOE Digital2 September 2016

 
The Nuffield Research Placement programme allows 1,000 students in the first year of post-16 education who want to go on to study Science, Technology, Engineering or Maths at university to gain some work experience in their field of interest. It’s (usually) done during the summer for around four weeks. Students who don’t have a family history of going to university or who attend schools in less well-off areas are encouraged to apply.
For the past three years, the IOE’s Centre for Longitudinal Studies has provided work placements to five Nuffield students. Over the course of their placements, the (more…)

Digital Economy Bill: how academic research + government data = a rich mine of information

Blog Editor, IOE Digital28 July 2016

Alison Park
Government departments and agencies build up routine information about all of us as part of their everyday activities. Who should have access to these data?
Were it not for Brexit, it’s likely that the last few weeks would have seen far more discussion about this topic. On 5 July the Cabinet Office published the response to its consultation on the ‘Better Use of Data in Government’. The document’s proposals  form the basis of a new Digital Economy Bill, which includes legislation to help researchers access data. The next day Dame Fiona Caldicott, the National Data Guardian for Health and Care, published her review of data security standards and proposed a new consent model for data sharing in the NHS and social care.
Researchers are interested in this so called ‘administrative data’ because its volume and detail can vastly exceed what it’s possible to collect through other routes such as surveys. As a result, bodies like the Economic and Social Research Council have set up special (more…)

How does moving house affect young children?

Blog Editor, IOE Digital25 July 2016

Heather Joshi. 
In the July special issue of Longitudinal and Life Course Studies researchers from the UK and US have collaborated to investigate whether the experience of moving home affects children’s development in their pre-school years.
Children move home in their early years more often than they do once they start school. Our transatlantic research project looked at two cohorts of children born around the year 2000. We decided to focus on the first five years of life, rather than often-researched school ages, to examine the impact solely of moving home rather than the complications that arise when moving and changing school.
The British families in our study, the UK Millennium Cohort, had some 14,000 children (more…)