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British Household Panel SurveyBHPS

19 January 2001

The fifth annual BHPS User Group Meeting was held in London on 19 January and was attended by over 75 BHPS users. Morning sessions were devoted to updates on developments within the Institute for Social and Economic Research and within the BHPS itself, a presentation on uses of the new sub-samples and alternative weighting systems and an open session on user analysis issues. In the afternoon, three brief presentations on research and analysis methods by members of the ISER staff – on human capital and work histories. The General Household Questionnaire and on family linkages – were followed by a more detailed presentation on the future of the questionnaire including the ageing and retirement module planned for Wave 11.

Nina Bullen of MIMAS has kindly produced a report on the day’s proceedings, to which we would refer you. Below we provide a short summary of presentations with links to the papers and slides presented at the meeting. Please do contact the BHPS User Group if you have any queries or would like more information.

Update: News Since We Last Met and on the Immediate Future

Professor Jonathan Gershuny, Director of the ISER, opened the meeting with details of changes and additions within ISER, focussing on the new United Kingdom Longitudinal Studies Centre, established in October 1999 to promote the use of longitudinal data and to develop a strategy for the future of large-scale longitudinal surveys. For more information, see the presentation slides.

A schematic presentation of the history and future of the BHPS sample was presented and discussed. This highlights agreed and possible funding (X= agreed,? = possible) for a continuation of the original sample of ca. 10,000 individuals, the low-income additional sample (the sample added in 1997 when the British component of the ECHP was first produced using the BHPS as a base), the Scotland and Wales samples of 5000 individuals, the Northern Irish sample, a possible All-Ireland panel study and the possible re-sample at some point in the future.

CAPI Conversion

Heather Laurie’s MS Powerpoint presentation concerned the conversion of BHPS fieldwork to CAPI in 1999. The undertaking, while introducing some additional initial problems, is deemed an overall success.

Data Availability and Training

Nick Buck provided some news (MS Powerpoint presentation) relating to:

Data availability:

Wave 9 will be available from the Archive in February of 2001

Wave 10 will be available in December 2001.


Data Confrontation Workshops as part of Essex Summer School

Two-day courses on basic issues – the first will be held at ISER on 3-4 May.

User Conference:

The first User Conference will be held at ISER on 6-8 July of this year.

Use of BHPS with Multiple Samples

The rest of the presentation concerned the use of BHPS with multiple samples.

Research and Analysis Methods Presentations

The research and analysis methods presentations were:

Jonathan Gershuny on “The Sad Tale of Allerednic (with a Diversion on the Estimation of Human Capital from the BHPS)”. Allerednic is of course Cinderella spelt backwards: a more formal presentation of the evidence for the process whereby princesses are transformed into scullery maids is found in “Social Position from Narrative Data” Jonathan Gershuny, in Renewing Class Analysis eds Rosemary Crompton, Fiona Devine, Mike Savage and John Scott, Blackwell Sociological Review Monographs: 2000. The illustrative slides MS Word file userhc.doc outline the major points.

David Pevalin on the General Health Questionnaire. This presentation was based on David’s paper in the Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Journal (2000-35 508-512) on “Multiple Applications of the GHQ-12 in a general population sample: an investigation of long-term retest effects”

You can download a copy of the slides used – MS Word file overheads.doc

Nick Buck on Family Linkages (see slides).

The Future of the BHPS Questionnaire and the Retirement Module in Wave 11

The final session of the day was a presentation by Heather Laurie on the future of the BHPS questionnaire, including the ageing and retirement module in Wave 11. A short written presentation and illustrative slides MS Word file ageusers.doc and MS Word file BHPSuser.doc were distributed at the meeting, and opinions were sought on questions to be included.

If you have comments on any of the presentations, or would like more information, please feel free to contact either the BHPS User Group or the individuals concerned.

The next meeting of the User Group will take place next year, but news of new developments and new data releases are regularly posted at this web site and also distributed via the BHPS JISCmail list. We urge all users to join this group and to use it for specific or general questions concerning the BHPS and its use.