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The main objective of the BHPS is to further understanding of social and economic change at the individual and household level in Britain, and to identify, model and forecast such changes and their causes and consequences in relation to a range of socio-economic variables. It was designed as an annual survey of each adult member (aged 16 years and over) of a nationally representative sample of more than 5,000 households, making a total of approximately 10,000 individual interviews. The same individuals are re-interviewed in successive waves and, if they leave their original households, all adult members of their new households are also interviewed. Children are interviewed once they reach the age of 16; there is also a special survey of household members aged 11-15 included in the BHPS from Wave 4 onwards (the British Youth Panel, or BYP). From Wave 9, two additional samples were added to the BHPS in Scotland and Wales, and at Wave 11 an additional sample from Northern Ireland (which forms the Northern Ireland Household Panel Study or NIHPS) was added to increase the sample to cover the whole of the United Kingdom. For Waves 7-11, the BHPS also provided data for the European Community Household Panel (ECHP).
Main Topics/Subject Category
Information on households including: gender, date of birth, marital and employment status and their relationship to the household reference person, accomodation type, neighbourhood; individual demographics; residential mobility; health and caring.
job security, juvenile delinquency, kitchens, labour migration, labour mobility, labour relations
Identifier Variables
GOR, Metropolitan regions
Economic/Subject Categories
Demographics, Earnings, Income
Area of Health System
Public health
Data Available
Demographic, Socio-economic
Data collecting organization (s)
Office for National Statistics (ONS)
Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency
Data Type
Survey (longitudinal)
Coverage (date of field work)
Unit of Analysis
Aggregate, Individual

Adults aged 16 and over only (wave 1-3).  Children aged 11-15 added from wave 4 onwards

ESDS longitudinal, UK data archive
Conditions of Access
Free registration access