Children & Young People
Childhood plays a pivotal role in who we become as adults: from our educational attainment and progression into work, to how we form relationships with others.
Children and young people are two of the most vulnerable groups in society, and forming a more complete understanding of their lives and of how early experiences affect later life is vital. Investing in research and policy around children and young people will allow us to not only safeguard and support the next generation, but enrich their lives and allow each child and young person the opportunity to excel.
Children and Young People is one of ADR UK’s flagship research themes. It is aimed at enabling a more comprehensive assessment of the experience of childhood in the UK to in turn develop a better understanding of what does and doesn’t work in public sector services for children and young people. This includes assessing trends in vulnerability, wellbeing and welfare in early life and their impact upon later life experiences.
There are several ambitious new data linkage projects – as well as research projects using existing linked data – being undertaken across the partnership within this theme. These include, for example, linking together 2011 Census data with attainment data from the Department for Education (DfE) to create an anonymised longitudinal dataset on children in England: the ‘Growing Up in England’ dataset.
ADR Scotland is leading on the ‘Understanding Children’s Outcomes’ project, which is linking pupil census data for Scotland with Scottish Government data on looked-after children, children’s health, births and deaths, and the 2001/2011 national census.
ADR Northern Ireland (ADR NI) and ADR Wales are conducting important work examining the lives of looked-after children. In Northern Ireland, 30 years’ worth of individual-level social services data from Social Services Care Administrative and Records Environment are being linked to prescribed medication data, hospital data, the registry of self-harm and death records and the Northern Ireland Longitudinal Study (NILS), creating the UK’s first historical, population-wide cohort of those known to social services as children.
You can find out more about these projects and others underway within this theme by exploring the links below and visiting the ‘Projects’ page.
ADR England Children & Young People Representative Panel
To ensure the needs and interests of children and young people are properly considered in research using their data, the ADR England Children & Young People Representative Panel enables researchers to engage with those who work directly with or for children and young people in England. There are currently 15 members of the Panel from a variety of third sector organisations, voluntary and community groups and professional practices – all working directly with or on behalf of children and young people.
Panel members have the first-hand knowledge and expertise to be able to represent the interests of children and young people in discussions around their data and its research uses. Their input and advice helps ensure research is as impactful as possible by enabling researchers to frame their work around the most pressing issues faced by children and young people, as well as by helping to facilitate direct engagement with children and young people. See the full Terms of Reference for the Panel.
To find out more about other community and public engagement activities underway across the ADR UK partnership, see the Working with the Public page.
Children & Young People Projects
Linked local data on children and young people
9 February 2023
In this project, the team aims to create a research-ready dataset linking data held on children by local authorities, including education and social care, with data held by health services. This new resource will enable researchers to build evidence to support local and national strategies that improve outcomes for children.
Kids’ Environment and Health Cohort
19 January 2023
This project aims to set up a new national data resource that will allow researchers to examine how local physical and social environments influence children’s health and schooling across England.
Engaging with Children
10 August 2022
In this pilot project, ADR Scotland worked in partnership with Children in Scotland to talk with children and young people about their administrative data.
Children & Young People News
Embedding approaches to engaging children with data
Tracking impact at the Office for National Statistics: An overview of education-themed data analysis and research
New research investigates young people's transitions to post-compulsory education in Wales
Pilot campaign will engage new families with the importance of data research
New funding for the Department for Education will drive up use of linked education data for policy-relevant research
Thematic Research Overview: Education
Data Insight: Exploring transitions to post-compulsory education in Wales
Infants born into care in Scotland
The impact of Covid-19 on children's care processes in Scotland
Data Insight: Effectiveness of careers guidance in supporting participation in Post Compulsory Education and Training (PCET)
Find out more
If you are a researcher interested in working with admistrative data within this theme, or a policymaker interested in how ADR UK work can improve your insights and support your decision making in this area, please get in touch.