UK Data Service data catalogue record for:

British Household Panel Survey, Waves 1-18, 1991-2009: Special Licence Access, Local Authority District Codes

Title details

SN: 6028
Title: British Household Panel Survey, Waves 1-18, 1991-2009: Special Licence Access, Local Authority District Codes
Alternative title: BHPS
Persistent identifier: 10.5255/UKDA-SN-6028-1
Series: British Household Panel Survey [British Household Panel Survey, 1991-2009: Special Licence Access, Medium-Level Geographical Identifiers]
Depositor: University of Essex. Institute for Social and Economic Research
Principal investigator(s): University of Essex. Institute for Social and Economic Research
Data collector(s): GfK NOP
Office for National Statistics
Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency
Sponsor(s): Economic and Social Research Council


The citation for this study is:

University of Essex. Institute for Social and Economic Research. (2010). British Household Panel Survey, Waves 1-18, 1991-2009: Special Licence Access, Local Authority District Codes. [data collection]. 3rd Edition. UK Data Service. SN: 6028,

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Subject Categories

Social attitudes and behaviour - Society and culture


Abstract copyright UK Data Service and data collection copyright owner.

The main British Household Panel Survey (BHPS) is conducted by the ESRC UK Longitudinal Studies Centre (ULSC), together with the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) at the University of Essex. In addition to conducting the BHPS and disseminating it to the research community, ISER undertakes a programme of research based on panel data, using the BHPS and other national panels to monitor and measure social change.

The main objective of the BHPS is to further understanding of social and economic change at the individual and household level in the UK, and to identify, model and forecast such changes and their causes and consequences in relation to a range of socio-economic variables. It is conducted as a longitudinal study, where each adult member (aged 16 years and over) of a sampled household is interviewed annually. If individuals leave their original household, all adult members of their new households are interviewed. Children are also interviewed. For full details of the BHPS methodology, sampling, changes over time, and a complete set of documentation, see the main BHPS study, held at the UK Data Archive under SN 5151.

Understanding Society:
From Wave 19, the BHPS has been subsumed into a new longitudinal study called Understanding Society, or the United Kingdom Household Longitudinal Study (UKHLS), conducted by ISER. The BHPS Wave 19 formed part of Understanding Society Wave 2 (January 2010 - March 2011). The BHPS fieldwork period therefore moved from September-April to January-March. This means that the gap between interviews 18 and 19 for the BHPS sample ranges between 16 and 30 months rather than the standard 12 months. From Wave 2, the BHPS sample has been a permanent part of the larger study and interviews are conducted annually again. BHPS sample members have an identifier within the Understanding Society datasets, allowing BHPS users to match BHPS Wave 1-18 data to Understanding Society. The main Understanding Society study, held under SN 6614 now includes harmonised BHPS data in addition to the main Understanding Society files. Further information is available on the Understanding Society web site.

This dataset contains Local Authority District (LADISTC) geographic variables for each wave of the BHPS and a household identification serial number for file matching to the main BHPS data. The LADISTC are aggregated if their population falls below 120,000. This dataset is subject to restrictive access conditions, different to those for the main BHPS: see Information box on the right or Access section below.

There are two different releases available for Local Authority Districts (LAD) linked to the British Household Panel Survey.

* SN 6027 provides the LAD codes as used by official statistics and are therefore linkable. The code is four digit (except for Northern Ireland). Further information - including a full list of codes - may be found in the studies' user guides.

* SN 6028 gives codes created specifically for the BHPS, where the LADs were aggregated if their population fell below 120,000 in 1991 (for reasons of preventing disclosure). These codes are not linkable to other published statistics. They are still provided to users because until recently they were the only LAD codings available and some users may want to update their analyses using the old codes. Further information - including a full list of codes - may be found in the studies' user guides.

Latest edition:
For the third edition (July 2010), data for Wave 18 have been added to the dataset.

Main Topics:
Variables include household identification number and LADISTC codes for matching with each wave of the BHPS to date.

Coverage, universe, methodology

Dates of fieldwork: 1991 - 2009
Country: United Kingdom
Spatial units: Local Authority Districts
Observation units: Families/households
Administrative units (geographical/political)
Kind of data: Numeric data
Alpha/numeric data
Individual (micro) level
Universe: National
Respondent households included in the main BHPS.
Time dimensions: Longitudinal/panel/cohort
Data are collected annually
Sampling procedures: See the main BHPS for details of sampling.
Method of data collection: Transcription of existing materials
See the main BHPS for details of data collection.
Weighting: LADISTC data are not weighted. See the main BHPS for details of weighting used.

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Administrative and access information

Date of release:
First edition: 07 January 2009
Latest edition: 27 July 2010 (3rd Edition)
Copyright: Copyright Institute for Social and Economic Research
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. In addition, the UK Data Service is required to request permission from the depositor prior to supplying the data.

Please note:
Since these data pose a higher risk of disclosure than data made available under the standard End User Licence they have additional special conditions attached to them that take the form of a Special Licence (SL). The SL requires the completion of an additional application form, agreement to the conditions of the SL, the signature(s) of the researcher(s), and the explicit permission of the data owners to release the data to the researcher(s). This is to ensure that the guarantee of confidentiality given to survey respondents is protected. SL applications are screened by the UK Data Service and the data owners and data are only released to those researchers requiring data for statistical research purposes and who can justify their need for the SL data.

Researchers are required to keep the data under conditions of greater security than required under the standard End User Licence. The guide, Microdata handling and security: guide to good practice, explains how to meet these conditions.
Please note: Conditional access information:
Registered users can access any one of the BHPS Medium-level Geographical Identifiers files after agreeing to click-use conditions prior to ordering the data.
Only where users wish to obtain a second (or third etc.) BHPS Medium-level Geographical Identifiers file are they also required to complete a Special Licence Access request.
Availability: UK Data Service
Contact: Get in touch


Title File Name Size (KB)
UK Data Archive Data Dictionary 6028_ukda_data_dictionary.pdf 1196
Local Authority District Codes 6028_userguide_local_authority_district_codes.pdf 146
Study information and citation UKDA_Study_6028_Information.htm 6
READ File read6028.htm 11


View publications... Hide publications...

By principal investigator(s):
See the main BHPS bibliography under SN 5151.

Resulting from secondary analysis:
Longhi S. (2013) 'Impact of cultural diversity on wages, evidence from panel data', Regional Science and Urban Economics, 43(5), pp.797-807.

Longhi S. and Taylor M. (2014?) 'Employed and unemployed job seekers and the business cycle', Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, doi: 10.1111/obes.12029 Longer version: ISER Working Paper 2013-02, retrieved 17 February 2014 from


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