Catalogue

UK Data Service data catalogue record for:

Understanding the Importance of Work Histories in Determining Poverty in Old Age: Variables Derived from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing, 2002-2007

Title details

SN: 6427
Title: Understanding the Importance of Work Histories in Determining Poverty in Old Age: Variables Derived from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing, 2002-2007
Alternative title: Understanding the Importance of Work Histories in Determining Poverty in Old Age: Variables Derived from ELSA
Persistent identifier: 10.5255/UKDA-SN-6427-1
Depositor: Glaser, K., King's College London. Institute of Gerontology
Principal investigator(s): Glaser, K., King's College London. Institute of Gerontology
Nicholls, M., Department for Work and Pensions. Pensions Analysis and Incomes Division
Original data producer(s): Marmot, M., University College London. Department of Epidemiology and Public Health
Banks, J., Institute for Fiscal Studies
Blundell, R., Institute for Fiscal Studies
Lessof, C., National Centre for Social Research
Nazroo, J., University College London. Department of Epidemiology and Public Health
Huppert, F.A., University of Cambridge. Department of Psychiatry
Erens, B., National Centre for Social Research
Sponsor(s): Economic and Social Research Council
Grant number: RES-163-27-0014

Citation

The citation for this study is:

Glaser, K., Nicholls, M. (2010). Understanding the Importance of Work Histories in Determining Poverty in Old Age: Variables Derived from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing, 2002-2007. [data collection]. University College London. Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Institute for Fiscal Studies, National Centre for Social Research, University of Cambridge. Department of Psychiatry, [original data producer(s)]. UK Data Service. SN: 6427, http://doi.org/10.5255/UKDA-SN-6427-1

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Subject Categories

Elderly - Social stratification and groupings
Family life and marriage - Social stratification and groupings
General - Health
Social and occupational mobility - Social stratification and groupings
Social indicators and quality of life - Society and culture

Abstract

Abstract copyright UK Data Service and data collection copyright owner.

This study contains variables derived from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA). The main ELSA study is held at the UKDA under SN 5050.

The project consisted of a six-month ESRC User Fellowship (awarded to Malcolm Nicholls of the Department for Work and Pensions), examining factors leading to income poverty in old age, focusing on the influence of work histories and other life course factors. While much is known about the income position of current pensioners and the characteristics of those on low incomes, there is relatively little evidence about the life experiences which lead to these outcomes. The research that exists suggests that such events may have less of an impact on low income in later life than has generally been assumed. This may be because of the role of the state in protecting people against disrupted and interrupted work histories. The lack of research in this area in the UK reflects, in part, the limited availability of suitable longitudinal datasets. The life history data collected in the ELSA study was used to investigate how far low incomes in retirement are associated with people's work, partnership, parenting and health experiences once the role of the state is taken into account.

This study found that for the most part life-course events as measured here are not strongly associated with the chances of being on a low income in retirement. Low income risks, however, are typically best explained by a range of individual characteristics, many of which - such as social class and education - reflect circumstances or events earlier in a person's life. It appears that, while some aspects of an individual's life course do have a lingering impact on later life incomes, the direct effect of other life history variables for individuals is mitigated by the operation of state pensions and other benefits, and for women, by the role of marriage. The results of the study will help to inform the development of policy, by providing a better understanding of the causes of low income in old age.

Users are also advised to consult the main ELSA data and documentation (SN 5050). Further information may be found on the project's ESRC award and UPTAP web pages.
Main Topics:
Topics covered include length of time spent in paid work and in marriage, the timing of retirement, the number of children and timing of childbirth, and whether ill-health as an adult or as a child had been experienced. The modelling looks at the influence of these factors alongside a range of other characteristics such as social class and educational attainment.

Coverage, universe, methodology

Time period: Data are largely drawn from Waves 1-3 of ELSA, conducted between 2002 and 2007.
Dates of fieldwork: 2008 - 2009 - Derived data were compiled during 2008-2009.
Country: England
Spatial units: No spatial unit
Observation units: Individuals
Kind of data: Numeric data
Individual (micro) level
Universe: National
Respondents to ELSA Waves 1-3.
Time dimensions: Longitudinal/panel/cohort
Data drawn from longitudinal ELSA study.
Sampling procedures: See main ELSA study for details of sampling.
Number of units: 11,308 cases.
Method of data collection: Compilation or synthesis of existing material
Weighting: See main ELSA study for details of weighting.
Data sources: Data are drawn from the ELSA study (see under SN 5050).

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Administrative and access information

Date of release:
First edition: 14 May 2010
Copyright: Copyright K.Glaser (derived variables only). Copyright for ELSA data remains with the National Centre for Social Research, University College London and the Institute for Fiscal Studies.
Access conditions: The depositor has specified that registration is required and standard conditions of use apply. The depositor may be informed about usage.
Additional special conditions of use also apply. See terms and conditions of access for further information.
Please note: Users should note that these data are subject to the same special conditions of use as SN 5050, the main ELSA study.
Availability: UK Data Service
Contact: Get in touch

Documentation

Title File Name Size (KB)
Data file documentation 6427data_file_documentation.pdf 295
End of Award report 6427end_of_award_report_final.pdf 584
Study information and citation UKDA_Study_6427_Information.htm 24
READ File read6427.htm 12

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Understanding the Importance of Work Histories in Determining Poverty in Old Age: Variables Derived from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing, 2002-2007

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