Obtaining data linkage consent for children: factors influencing outcomes and potential biases

Publication type

Understanding Society Working Paper Series

Series Number



Understanding Society Working Paper Series


Publication date

July 14, 2016


This research uses a large nationally representative survey asking mothers to consent for both themselves and their children for two sets of records. Nearly all mothers give the same consent outcome for all their children. Consent is higher for education records than for health records and higher for mothers than children. Multivariate analyses suggest that minorities are generally less likely to consent, while more trust increases chances of consent. Several survey environment factors are also important. Findings suggest potential methodologies to improve consent rates, important given significant demographic differences found. However, data from 10-15 year olds in the study shows fewer differences for several important behaviours and attitudes.


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