COVID-19 Blogs and events ShareThis

In this section, you’ll find CLOSER’s COVID-19: Perspectives blog series and COVID-19 related events from the longitudinal research community.

COVID-19: Perspectives blog series

Part 3: Understanding the pandemic – What has lockdown meant for ‘families beyond households’?
By Kelly Reeve, Understanding Society

In the final blog of our 3-part series with Understanding Society, Kelly Reeve looks at what coronavirus restrictions meant for grandparents’ relationships with grandchildren, and for parents who don’t live with their children, during the first UK lockdown.


Overhead view of students studyingPart 2: Understanding the pandemic – looking at early research findings from COVID-19 data
By Chris Coates, Understanding Society

In the second blog post in a 3-part series by Understanding Society, Chris Coates takes a look at the implications posed by early research findings from the COVID-19 survey they launched last year.


Woman wearing a mask in the park using her phonePart 1: Understanding the pandemic – surveying the population during lockdown
By Michaela Benzeval, Jon Burton, and Peter Lynn, Understanding Society

In the first of a 3-part blog series, CLOSER partner study, Understanding Society, takes a look at how they rapidly adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Woman wearing a mask sitting on a trainThe COVID-19 pandemic: a life course perspective
By Rebecca Hardy, CLOSER

Prof Rebecca Hardy, CLOSER Director, reflects on how a life course approach can aid understanding of the likely long-term impacts of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, from mental health and obesity to economic and educational inequalities.


Assessment of how older adults have been affected by COVID-19: A look at the Hertfordshire Cohort Study
By Elaine Dennison, University of Southampton

Elaine Dennison takes a look at the lockdown experiences of Hertfordshire Cohort Study participants during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.


AWoman wearing face shield and medical maskdapting to the new normal: innovation and collaboration in longitudinal studies during COVID-19
By Andy Wong, MRC Unit for Lifelong Health and Ageing at UCL

Andy Wong talks about innovation and adaptation of data collection methods in the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.


woman wearing face maskHow the UK’s longitudinal studies are helping society navigate the COVID-19 pandemic
By Alissa Goodman, UCL Centre for Longitudinal Studies (CLS)

Alissa Goodman discusses how CLS rapidly responded to the UK’s lockdown by launching a special COVID-19 survey to capture time-critical experiences of the pandemic, and looks at the first analyses of data.


COVID-19 and the inequality in psychological distress in the UK: new evidence from the first three months of the pandemic
By Apostolos Davillas, University of East Anglia and Andrew Jones, University of York

Dr Apostolos Davillas and Professor Andrew Jones explore new evidence from the first three months of the UK response to the pandemic, highlighting the inequality in psychological distress in the UK.


A new future for longitudinal research in the wake of COVID-19
By David Porteous, Generation Scotland and Nic Timpson, ALSPAC

David Porteous and Nic Timpson write about the process of data collection during the UK’s lockdown that led them to join forces and adapt the Generation Scotland and ALSPAC COVID-19 questionnaire for wider use in the UK and other cohorts.


Remote data collection for large-scale longitudinal research: reflections from the pre- and lessons for the post-pandemic era
By Bonamy Oliver, Associate Professor in Developmental Psychology

Bonamy Oliver writes about the challenge of family psychology in 2020, and what pre-pandemic efforts to conduct detailed family assessments suitable for large-scale studies have to offer.


The future of data collection in a rapidly changing world
By Rebecca Hardy, CLOSER Director

Rebecca Hardy reflects on the challenges and opportunities of collecting data as a result of COVID-19, and shares her insights on what the future holds for longitudinal research.


Adapting data collection during COVID-19 at TwinsUK
By Paz García, Twins UK Engagement & Communications Manager

Paz García shares insights into how the TwinsUK quickly adapted their data collection methods to effectively gather information from their participants during the UK’s lockdown.


Volunteer brings shopping to older personAssessing the impact of COVID-19 on the older population in England
By Kate Coughlin, ELSA Project Manager

Kate Coughlin, outlines ELSA’s COVID-19 response and how the study is in the position of being able to provide unique insights on the immediate and longer-term effects of the pandemic on the older population.


COVID-19: A defining moment for longitudinal research?
By Rob Davies, Head of CLOSER COVID-19 Taskforce

Rob Davies argues that harnessing the power of longitudinal studies will help us understand the pandemic and calls for a new national birth cohort to ensure valuable information from another generation is not lost.


Find out more about our COVID-19 Perspectives blog series and how you can write for us.

COVID-19 Events

Here you’ll find information on upcoming and past events relating to COVID-19 and the longitudinal research community.

Upcoming events

There are no upcoming events currently listed.

If you are organising an event relating to COVID-19 and the longitudinal research community and would like it listed on this page, please send the event details to our Digital Communications and Events Manager, Jennie Blows (

Past events

November 2020

‘Data, Science and Policy’ – 50 years of the 1970 British Cohort Study
9 November 2020 | Organised by UCL Centre for Longitudinal Studies

As part of the UCL Centre for Longitudinal Studies’ (CLS) celebration of 50 years of the 1970 British Cohort Study (BCS70), they are hosted a live lunchtime panel that looked at the huge impact of the study on policy in the UK. What role does the study now play as policymakers look for solutions to societal problems exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic? The event was chaired by Dr Lee Elliot Major, OBE, Professor of Social Mobility, University of Exeter and featured prominent BCS70 authors including Professor Leon Feinstein, University of Oxford and Dr Praveetha Patalay, UCL.

Find out more about the event on the CLS website.


The COVID-19 gender gap: the impact of the pandemic on gender inequalities in the labour market
5 November 2020 | Organised by the Social Market Foundation in partnership with UK Research and Innovation

This virtual Ask the Expert panel event explored the impact of COVID-19 on gender inequalities in the UK labour market. During the event, Director of the CEPR Labour Economics ProgrammeProfessor Barbara Petrongolo presented new data drawn from Understanding Society’s COVID-19 survey.

Find out more about the event on the Social Market Foundation website

October 2020

COVID-19 Data Dive: Exploring the social and economic impacts of the pandemic
22-23 October 2020 | Organised by UK Data Service, CLS, Understanding Society and the Welfare at a (Social) Distance research project

This two-day free online workshop brought major social, economic and population studies together to provide an opportunity for researchers, policy and charity expertise to collaborate and draw out critical questions about the impacts of the pandemic.

Find out more about the workshop on the UK Data Service website

ELSA Wave 9 Report online launch
8 October 2020 | Organised by ELSA

ELSA hosted an online event featuring presentations on the latest findings from study and the COVID-19 Substudy to launch their Wave 9 Report.  The session included a series of short talks on scientific results and data availability. A recording of the event can be viewed on the ELSA YouTube channel.


September 2020

COVID-19 Super Cohort workshop
23 September 2020 | Organised by CLOSER in collaboration with the Wellcome Longitudinal Population Study COVID-19 Secretariat

This workshop provided an opportunity for delegates to contribute to the COVID-19 Super Cohort proposal.

For more information, visit the CLOSER event page

August 2020

COVID 19 Survey in Five National Longitudinal Studies online training session
6 August 2020 | Organised by CLS

This free online training session supports researchers wishing to use data from our recent COVID 19 wave 1 survey. Find out more about the CLS COVID-19 survey and view a recording of the training on the CLS COVID-19 survey page

July 2020

The future of data collection in longitudinal population studies (LPS): during and after COVID-19
1 July 2020 | Organised by CLOSER

This meeting brought together representatives of LPS and survey agencies to share information and identify solutions to the challenges of collecting data during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.

Download the meeting report (PDF)

For more information, visit the CLOSER event page