Event-triggered data collection

Publication type

Understanding Society Working Paper Series

Series Number



Understanding Society Working Paper Series


Publication date

December 3, 2019


Each year, in Understanding Society: the UK Household Longitudinal Study, we ask respondents about key events that might have happened since they last took part in the study (e.g. changes in employment, family, partnership, health, etc). For this methodological briefing we have explored how the scope and/or quality of data about key transitions in people’s lives could be improved by identifying events closer to their occurrence. For this purpose we have: 1) reviewed the annual Understanding Society questionnaire to identify candidate domains for event-triggered data collection, 2) carried out qualitative research to inform the design of event-triggered data collection, 3) developed prototype fieldwork protocols, and 4) experimentally tested aspects of these protocols.  


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