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CLOSER, the home of longitudinal research, brings together eight world-leading longitudinal studies with participants born throughout the 20th and 21st centuries.

Our work maximises the use, value and impact of these, and other, longitudinal studies to help improve our understanding of key social and biomedical challenges.

How we are making a difference:

We enable change over time and across generations to be better understood

We are bringing longitudinal data together in a consistent format – a process known as data harmonisation. This is allowing longitudinal researchers to compare data from different studies for the first time, revealing how and why the country is changing over time – and what this means for the future. Read more about data harmonisation.

We enhance insights through data linkage

We are leading research to link data held by government to survey data collected by longitudinal studies. Linking this data enables researchers to gain rich insights into how different aspects of people’s lives interrelate. Read more about data linkage.

We help researchers find data

Our unique search engine CLOSER Discovery enables researchers to search and browse questionnaires and data from the UK’s leading longitudinal studies to find out what data are available. This is opening up new opportunities for working together across different longitudinal studies. Explore CLOSER Discovery.

We train the longitudinal community

We provide training and capacity building opportunities for experienced researchers and those running longitudinal studies. Our Learning Hub has information and resources aimed at those in academia, government and the third sector who are new to longitudinal studies, to help them better understand the value of the studies and how to use the data. Read more about the CLOSER Learning Hub and view our latest training events.

We fund research projects

We fund research projects that use longitudinal data to investigate a wide range of areas of interest, including obesity, physical activity, mental health, and ageing. Many of the research projects we fund are creating harmonised datasets, improving data linkage or developing other resources for the wider longitudinal research community. Read more about the research we fund.

We maximise the impact of longitudinal research

We are working to achieve the greatest possible impact for CLOSER’s outputs and activities, as well as our studies. We do this by influencing government, producing longitudinal resources for the academic community and funding research that addresses the biomedical, social, economic and environmental challenges facing the UK. Read more about how we maximise research impact.