Title
Impact of Centre for Longitudinal Study Information and User Support (CeLSIUS) RES-348-25-004 and extension RES-348-25-0004-01
Description
The Centre for Longitudinal Study Information and User Support (CeLSIUS) provides support for UK academic users of the Office for National Statistics Longitudinal Study (ONS LS). The LS includes linked census and vital registration data for approximately 1% of the population of England & Wales. It is representative of the whole population, is maintained through the recruitment of a sample of new births and immigrants, and includes individual level data from four censuses (1971, 1981, 1991 & 2001) as well as linked information on births, deaths and cancer registrations. Data from the 2011 Census is currently being added but was not available during the period of this award. The LS database is maintained by ONS who specify terms on which data may be accessed by researchers. CeLSIUS facilitates and promotes this access by providing hands on support to researchers, including ensuring compliance with procedures designed to minimise disclosure risks; provision of training; promotion of the database; and liaison with ONS. During 2006-2012 CeLSIUS was part of the ESRC Census Programme and contributed to the work of the programme as a whole. Outcomes and impacts of CeLSIUS are largely indirect ones arising from the work of the researchers we support, although we also developed training materials which have had some impact in their own right and contributed to debates and policy discussions on census and data access which have wider implications for UK research. This report relates to the period 2006-2012 and spans two grants; the latter one (2011-2012) was made during a period of austerity and did not incude resources for anything other than provision of core user support services. CeLSIUS was based at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine 2001-2012 and directed by Emily Grundy. In 2012 CeLSIUS moved to UCL, following a job move out of London by Emily Grundy, who remains a Co-I on the successor service.
Language
English
Author
Emily M D Grundy
Contributor
Andy Sloggett
Contributor
Pat Doyle
Summary of scientific impacts
During 2006-12 CeLSIUS supported 246 researchers working on 103 projects and over 100 research articles, theses and working papers were produced. These outputs included one Bachelors’ dissertation, seven Masters’ and ten PhD theses demonstrating CeLSIUS's contributuion to building the future capacity of the UK social science community. CeLSIUS also contributed to the development of other ESRC investments, for example providing advice and practical help, including the sharing of the website scripts developed by CeLSIUS, to the Scottish and Northern Ireland Longitudinal Study services. Presentations were made at numerous relevant events attended by researchers, policy makers and in some cases the general public (e.g. event at British Library, March 2011). Although CeLSIUS exists to support the UK research community, we provided advice to a delegation from the Russian Federal State Statistics Service and statistical service staff from New Zealand and Spain on the potential of census based linkage studies. We contributed to many UK training courses on the use of the LS and census data more generally, and also to a training course in Spain. We organised sessions and presented at many conferences, including flagship census programme events. Through our partnership with ONS, we not only presented and defended academic user interests in the LS, but also contributed to the development and use of the data set (e.g the web based data dictionary which is the resource also used by ONS staff ). CeLSIUS contributed to the Beyond 2011 debates both within and beyond the Office for National Statistics and ESRC Census Programme and to discussions on research use of administrative and sensitive data. Apart from the CeLSIUS submission to the House of Commons Select Committee considering the future of the Census, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation submission to the same committee emphasised the value of LS based research supported by CeLSIUS.
Findings and Outputs
Research supported by CeLSIUS has had scientific impact in many areas relevant to public policy, for example, research on the effect of migration on geographic variations in health (Connolly et al 2007; 31 citations); on social mobility and health inequalities (Boyle et al 2009; 25 citations; Bartley & Plewis 2007, 24 citations); on inequalities in cancer survival (Sloggett et al 2007; 31 citations) and on factors influencing admission to institutional care (Grundy & Jitlal 2007, 48 citations). Findings from research on marital histories and health has appeared in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health (Blomgren et al) and BMC Public Health (Grundy & Tomassini) with a table from the latter being reprinted in a journal article by Robards, Evandrou et al (Maturitas December 2012). Important recent work includes research on environmental influences on health; on migration and the fertility of migrants (Robards); on migration, education and social mobility (Findlay et al; Sturgis) on child poverty (Platt); and other research on ethnic and religious minority groups (Feng et al; Kaufman). For example, LS based work by Eric Kaufman on Muslim intermarriage in Britain in comparative perspective appeared in his book ( 2010) which has had approximately 3,000 sales, been cited 44 times in Google Scholar [01/07/13] and reviewed in most UK broadsheets (Telegraph, Times, FT, Independent, Observer). Work based on the LS has fed into two recent reports on grandparenthood which achieved extensive media coverage (Glaser K et al 2013). This work fed into a successful application for an ESRC Secondary Data Analysis project now underway. CeLSIUS collaborated with ONS on production of an issue of Population Trends (2010, no 139) devoted to the LS and illustrating its potential and use (the issue includes 3 articles by CeLSIUS staff). [Number of citations from Google Scholar July 2013).
How these impacts were achieved
CeLSIUS’s work involved: (1) Direct support to researchers (2) Provision of training and resources (3) Promotion of the LS; contribution to governance and discussion with ONS on data access. (1) Direct support included: Advising on design and feasibility of projects; guiding researchers through the application process; creating data extracts; running user specified analyses and helping researchers visiting the safe setting; checking outputs for compliance with disclosure control. The user experience is illustrated below: "‘My doctoral research uses the ONS Longitudinal Study data from 1971, 1981 and 2001... I met with Rachel Stuchbury at the beginning of this research project .... She was generous with her time and explained the structure and limitations of the data, in addition to this she helped me navigate the permission process and listened to my research objectives. Rachel made herself available and prepared the sensitive variables to my specifications and throughout the analysis she provided me many forms of support. She was excited about the data and asked helpful and insightful questions about my research along the way. .. I was able to work at the VML offices in London for this analysis. This was a productive work environment in which Rachel, Chris and the rest of the team were quick to help if there were any problems and able to offer some advice on coding and data management. I feel that my work greatly benefited from this experience." Morag Henderson, PhD student, University of Oxford, July 2013. (2) We produced 5 new online learning modules; updated our other modules; produced online tables on topical subjects and several tables requested by users. We produced 4 downloadable aggregated datasets and a derived variable database. We provided face to face training at events organised by the Census Portal. (3) Membership of key ONS & ESRC boards, extensive work with ONS on a data security review; collaboration with ONS on promotion of the LS.
Who these findings impact
The main direct impact of our work has been on our users. Feedback via the Census programme user survey was very positive as are some comments from users: 'I analysed the LS for my doctoral dissertation on ethnic educational inequalities among the children of immigrants..... The CeLSIUS staff assigned to my project at the time of the data analysis process was always helpful, supportive and knowledgeable. The CeLSIUS website was also very useful whenever I was facing difficulties.' Laurence Lessard-Phillips, Phd Student, now researcher at the University of Manchester. ‘Experienced, expert users of the ONS LS at CeLSIUS made important recommendations and suggestions regarding variables, sample selection and data quality considerations throughout my use of the ONS LS. This on-going user support was crucial for arriving at the final analysis and ensuring that this was of a robust standard for presentation and publication.' James Robards, PhD student, now researcher at the University of Southampton. 'I first started using the LS towards the end of the period of support provided by the [previous support unit] and my project was transferred for support by the new team at LSHTM. ... there was a breath of fresh air with the new team and an energy around getting more people to do more work with the LS. There was an apparent ‘can do’ attitude. Patently, Emily Grundy’s huge experience of using the LS as an active researcher was key to an understanding by staff of what researchers needed along with knowledge of the technical and other challenges to using the resource. ...There are many challenges in using the LS given the need to preserve confidentiality and the complexity of the dataset. The information provided by staff through the website, personal communication and at seminars and conferences has always been clear and supportive.' Paul Norman, University of Leeds. We have also contributed impact through support for the work of other ESRC investments.
Summary of economic impacts
During 2006-12 CeLSIUS supported 246 researchers working on 103 projects and over 100 research articles, theses and working papers were produced. These outputs included one Bachelors’ dissertation, seven Masters’ and ten PhD theses demonstrating CeLSIUS's contributuion to building the future capacity of the UK social science community. CeLSIUS also contributed to the development of other ESRC investments, for example providing advice and practical help, including the sharing of the website scripts developed by CeLSIUS, to the Scottish and Northern Ireland Longitudinal Study services. Presentations were made at numerous relevant events attended by researchers, policy makers and in some cases the general public (e.g. event at British Library, March 2011). Although CeLSIUS exists to support the UK research community, we provided advice to a delegation from the Russian Federal State Statistics Service and statistical service staff from New Zealand and Spain on the potential of census based linkage studies. We contributed to many UK training courses on the use of the LS and census data more generally, and also to a training course in Spain. We organised sessions and presented at many conferences, including flagship census programme events. Through our partnership with ONS, we not only presented and defended academic user interests in the LS, but also contributed to the development and use of the data set (e.g the web based data dictionary which is the resource also used by ONS staff ). CeLSIUS contributed to the Beyond 2011 debates both within and beyond the Office for National Statistics and ESRC Census Programme and to discussions on research use of administrative and sensitive data. Apart from the CeLSIUS submission to the House of Commons Select Committee considering the future of the Census, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation submission to the same committee emphasised the value of LS based research supported by CeLSIUS.
Findings and Outputs
Research supported by CeLSIUS has had scientific impact in many areas relevant to public policy, for example, research on the effect of migration on geographic variations in health (Connolly et al 2007; 31 citations); on social mobility and health inequalities (Boyle et al 2009; 25 citations; Bartley & Plewis 2007, 24 citations); on inequalities in cancer survival (Sloggett et al 2007; 31 citations) and on factors influencing admission to institutional care (Grundy & Jitlal 2007, 48 citations). Findings from research on marital histories and health has appeared in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health (Blomgren et al) and BMC Public Health (Grundy & Tomassini) with a table from the latter being reprinted in a journal article by Robards, Evandrou et al (Maturitas December 2012). Important recent work includes research on environmental influences on health; on migration and the fertility of migrants (Robards); on migration, education and social mobility (Findlay et al; Sturgis) on child poverty (Platt); and other research on ethnic and religious minority groups (Feng et al; Kaufman). For example, LS based work by Eric Kaufman on Muslim intermarriage in Britain in comparative perspective appeared in his book ( 2010) which has had approximately 3,000 sales, been cited 44 times in Google Scholar [01/07/13] and reviewed in most UK broadsheets (Telegraph, Times, FT, Independent, Observer). Work based on the LS has fed into two recent reports on grandparenthood which achieved extensive media coverage (Glaser K et al 2013). This work fed into a successful application for an ESRC Secondary Data Analysis project now underway. CeLSIUS collaborated with ONS on production of an issue of Population Trends (2010, no 139) devoted to the LS and illustrating its potential and use (the issue includes 3 articles by CeLSIUS staff). [Number of citations from Google Scholar July 2013).
How these impacts were achieved
CeLSIUS’s work involved: (1) Direct support to researchers (2) Provision of training and resources (3) Promotion of the LS; contribution to governance and discussion with ONS on data access. (1) Direct support included: Advising on design and feasibility of projects; guiding researchers through the application process; creating data extracts; running user specified analyses and helping researchers visiting the safe setting; checking outputs for compliance with disclosure control. The user experience is illustrated below: "‘My doctoral research uses the ONS Longitudinal Study data from 1971, 1981 and 2001... I met with Rachel Stuchbury at the beginning of this research project .... She was generous with her time and explained the structure and limitations of the data, in addition to this she helped me navigate the permission process and listened to my research objectives. Rachel made herself available and prepared the sensitive variables to my specifications and throughout the analysis she provided me many forms of support. She was excited about the data and asked helpful and insightful questions about my research along the way. .. I was able to work at the VML offices in London for this analysis. This was a productive work environment in which Rachel, Chris and the rest of the team were quick to help if there were any problems and able to offer some advice on coding and data management. I feel that my work greatly benefited from this experience." Morag Henderson, PhD student, University of Oxford, July 2013. (2) We produced 5 new online learning modules; updated our other modules; produced online tables on topical subjects and several tables requested by users. We produced 4 downloadable aggregated datasets and a derived variable database. We provided face to face training at events organised by the Census Portal. (3) Membership of key ONS & ESRC boards, extensive work with ONS on a data security review; collaboration with ONS on promotion of the LS.
Who these findings impact
The main direct impact of our work has been on our users. Feedback via the Census programme user survey was very positive as are some comments from users: 'I analysed the LS for my doctoral dissertation on ethnic educational inequalities among the children of immigrants..... The CeLSIUS staff assigned to my project at the time of the data analysis process was always helpful, supportive and knowledgeable. The CeLSIUS website was also very useful whenever I was facing difficulties.' Laurence Lessard-Phillips, Phd Student, now researcher at the University of Manchester. ‘Experienced, expert users of the ONS LS at CeLSIUS made important recommendations and suggestions regarding variables, sample selection and data quality considerations throughout my use of the ONS LS. This on-going user support was crucial for arriving at the final analysis and ensuring that this was of a robust standard for presentation and publication.' James Robards, PhD student, now researcher at the University of Southampton. 'I first started using the LS towards the end of the period of support provided by the [previous support unit] and my project was transferred for support by the new team at LSHTM. ... there was a breath of fresh air with the new team and an energy around getting more people to do more work with the LS. There was an apparent ‘can do’ attitude. Patently, Emily Grundy’s huge experience of using the LS as an active researcher was key to an understanding by staff of what researchers needed along with knowledge of the technical and other challenges to using the resource. ...There are many challenges in using the LS given the need to preserve confidentiality and the complexity of the dataset. The information provided by staff through the website, personal communication and at seminars and conferences has always been clear and supportive.' Paul Norman, University of Leeds. We have also contributed impact through support for the work of other ESRC investments.
Potential future impacts
Many projects currently underway using the LS will produce publications which are anticipated to have large scientific and social impacts. The students supported by Celsius constitute a pool of experienced LS users who will extend use in their future careers
Unexpected impacts
One unexpected impact was the value of our expertise and of materials on our website for researchers other than LS users. For example, Emily Grundy was able to contribute to the work of the Enhancing Census data over time project (stakeholder group membership) and this project team found materials on the CeLSIUS website very helpful as indicated below in the email from Tanvii Desai (July 11 2013). 'the EEHCM project has found the CeLSIUS website a useful resource for historical census resources such as variable and value labels (in particular for the 1981 census), and geographical classifications. There are few sources like the CeLSIUS website that preserve and present this information in a convenient, accessible way".
Limited economic impacts
CeLSIUS is funded to provide research support, rather than undertaking scientific research, and during the period covered by this report we were charged with providing support only to UK academic researchers with support for Government users being provided by ONS. We have nevertheless had some social and economic impacts, as indicated above, but less than if we had being working directly with users from Government and the Third sector.
Harvard
Grundy, Emily M D et al. Centre for Longitudinal Study Information and User Support (CeLSIUS): one year extension: ESRC Impact Report, RES-348-25-0004-01. Swindon: ESRC
Vancouver
Grundy Emily M D et al. Centre for Longitudinal Study Information and User Support (CeLSIUS): one year extension: ESRC Impact Report, RES-348-25-0004-01. Swindon: ESRC.