The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) has launched a review of the longitudinal studies it funds, to be carried out from 2016-18. The purpose of the review is to assess the scientific need for longitudinal studies and consider how they can meet the needs of future interdisciplinary research challenges, both individually and collectively.
The recommendations from the review will inform the ESRC’s future strategy, funding, management and commissioning decisions, including what to continue, to change, to stop and to start.
More specifically, the review will examine:
- the future scientific and policy-relevant need for longitudinal studies, including the interests of non-social scientists and elements of the research base that have not traditionally been core users of longitudinal datasets
- the impact of longitudinal studies and where we expect to see impact in the future
- the changing context of large survey data collection, including attitudes to engagement, new technologies and methods of data collection, and the potential for data linkage with administrative, health and commercial datasets
- the shape of the ESRC’s current portfolio, including its UK and international context, and its fit with broader data infrastructure.
The review will be carried out by independent, international panel chaired by Prof Pamela Davis-Kean of the University of Michigan.
Respond to the online consultation
Respond to the surveymonkey questionnaire here: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/23RRD9L
Anyone with an interest in longitudinal studies is strongly encouraged to take part in the first phase of the review – an online consultation running from 3 October to 4 November 2016.
Respondents are asked to give their input in two main areas:
- key scientific questions that longitudinal studies should address in future
- methodological and technological issues that need to be addressed in design, implementation and analysis.
The consultation also asks respondents to reconsider the priorities identified in the ESRC’s previous review, conducted in 2006.
Responses to the consultation will inform the next stage of the review, a Scientific Needs Workshop.