Enhancing longitudinal studies by linkage to national databases: Growing up in Australia, the longitudinal study of Australian children

Carol Soloff*, Ann Sanson, Melissa Wake, Linda Harrison

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Growing Up in Australia is a national longitudinal study of the development and wellbeing of 10,000 Australian children. The study has been committed since inception to support data linkage to other datasets, to value-add to the primary modes of data collection from parents and others. It can increase the efficiency of data collection by reducing respondent and interviewer burden as well as adding new dimensions to addressing key research questions. The viability of data linkage needs to take into account the relevance of the data for research and policy, as well as data quality and cost, privacy and consent issues and the ease of access. This article documents the various sources for data linkage considered for Growing Up in Australia, including government health and education records, child care accreditation data, and community-level data, and examines the strengths and challenges associated with each.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)349-363
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Social Research Methodology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2007
Externally publishedYes


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