Access collections of UK survey data
These UK surveys can be used to produce national estimates.
They can all be used to describe a population at one point of time and most can be used to compare populations at more than one time point. Many are large surveys that are used to inform policy.
Below is a list of some of the key studies that provide UK survey data.
Annual Population Survey
The Annual Population Survey (APS) combines data from the Labour Force Survey (LFS) and national boosts. Datasets contain 12 months of data and responses from 155,000 households and 360,000 people. It thus improves intercensal monitoring of key variables for a range of policy purposes.
British Social Attitudes
This National Centre for Social Research (NatCen) survey tracks people’s changing social, political and moral attitudes and informs the development of public policy. It has been conducted since 1983, with over 3,000 respondents annually and questions repeated periodically.
The Citizenship Survey was conducted seven times between 2001 and 2011. It was designed to capture information on community cohesion, civic engagement, race and faith, and volunteering.
Community Life Survey
The Community Life Survey was first commissioned by the Cabinet Office in 2012-2013. It is an annual household survey conducted with adults resident in England, covering a range of topics including measures that are key to understanding society and local communities, such as volunteering, charitable giving, civic engagement and social action.
Continuous Household Survey
The Continuous Household Survey (CHS) is one of the largest continuous surveys carried out in Northern Ireland. It has been conducted by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) since 1983 and covers a wide range of social and economic issues.
Crime Survey for England and Wales
The Crime Survey for England and Wales (formerly British Crime Survey) asks over 50,000 people living in households in England and Wales about their experiences of crime in the last 12 months.
English Housing Survey (formerly English House Condition Survey and Survey of English Housing)
The English Housing Survey (EHS) began in 2008-09, bringing together two previous housing surveys into a single fieldwork operation: the English House Condition Survey (EHCS) which ran in five years between 1967 and 2001 and became continuous from 2002 to 2007, and the Survey of English Housing (SEH) which ran from 1993/94 to 2007-08. Commissioned by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG), the EHS collects information from households on housing circumstances.
European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions
This is an instrument aimed at collecting timely and comparable cross-sectional and longitudinal microdata on income, poverty and social exclusion. The available datasets are cross-sectional data for the UK.
Family Expenditure Survey
The Family Expenditure Survey (FES) is a continuous survey of household expenditure and income which ran from 1957. In 2001, the FES was merged with the National Food Survey (NFS) to create the Expenditure and Food Survey (EFS).
Family Resources Survey
The Family Resources Survey (FRS) is a continuous survey conducted by the Office for National Statistics and National Centre for Social Research with an annual target sample of 24,000 private households. Respondents are asked a wide range of questions about their financial circumstances including receipt of Social Security benefits, housing costs, assets and savings.
FRS Individual Income Series
The Individual Income Series provides estimates of the individual income of men and women in Great Britain and changes in income over time. The data are derived directly from the Family Resources Survey (FRS) and the Households Below Average Income (HBAI).
General Lifestyle Survey
The General Lifestyle Survey (formerly the General Household Survey) was a multi-purpose survey carried out by the Office for National Statistics from 1971-2012. It was a survey of private households on a wide range of topics.
The Health Survey for England is a series of annual surveys carried out since 1991 with a number of core questions and a particular topic focus. The survey uses a mixture of questionnaires, physical measurements and blood samples.
Households Below Average Income
Households Below Average Income (HBAI) uses household disposable incomes, after adjusting for the household size and composition, as a proxy for material living standards. More precisely, it is a proxy for the level of consumption of goods and services that people could attain given the disposable income of the household in which they live. The main source of data used in this study is the Family Resources Survey, which is a continuous cross- sectional survey.
Integrated Household Survey
The Integrated Household Survey (IHS) datasets provide data from the core variables of individual survey modules, including the Annual Population Survey, Life Opportunities Survey and Living Costs and Food Survey (with varying degrees over the years 2009-2014). The IHS datasets are no longer produced from 2015 onwards. For more information see the FAQs ‘Which surveys (or modules) are included in the IHS?’ and ‘What is the Integrated Household Survey (IHS)?’.
Labour Force Survey
The Labour Force Survey (LFS) is a survey of the employment circumstances of the UK population. It is the largest survey with a consistent design and provides the official measures of employment and unemployment.
Life Opportunities Survey
The Life Opportunities Survey (LOS) is carried out by the Office for National Statistics on behalf of the Office for Disability Issues. The survey started in June 2009 with a random sample of 37,500 households across Britain and tracks the experiences of disabled people over time.
Living Costs and Food Survey
The Living Costs and Food Survey (LCF) replaced the Expenditure and Food Survey in 2008. It collects information on spending patterns and the cost of living. It is conducted by the Office for National Statistics and achieves a sample of around 6,000 households.
Living in Wales Survey
The Living in Wales Survey series (LIW) was the main general source of statistical information about households and the condition of homes in Wales and ran from 2004 to 2008, consisting of a household survey and a property survey. It has now been succeeded by the National Survey for Wales.
National Food Survey
The National Food Survey was originally set up in 1940 by the then Ministry of Food to monitor the adequacy of diets during wartime. About 8,000 households took part each year until 2000 when it was replaced by the Living Costs and Food Survey.
National Survey for Wales
The National Survey for Wales is a key source of information for the Welsh Government, other public sector organisations, and academics on the views and circumstances of people in Wales. It is carried out face-to-face with a random sample of over 10,000 adults a year. The survey covers a range of issues and topics are reviewed each year. Access the National Survey for Wales.
National Travel Survey
The National Travel Survey (NTS) is a series of household surveys to study personal travel behaviour. Data are available starting in 1972 although the survey design has changed since then. Recent studies have data from around 8,000 households.
Northern Ireland Family Expenditure Survey
The Northern Ireland Family Expenditure Survey (FES) was a continuous survey of household expenditure and income that started in 1967 and linked with the Great Britain FES in 1968 to create a UK survey. It was superseded in 2001 by the Expenditure and Food Survey. For most of its existence, data are available for both the UK and separately for Northern Ireland.
Northern Ireland Labour Force Survey
The Northern Ireland Labour Force Survey is carried out by the Central Survey Unit of the Northern Ireland Research and Statistics Agency (NISRA). It is closely related to the Great Britain survey and feeds into UK statistics. The data are also available separately for Northern Ireland from 1995-2000.
Northern Ireland Life and Times Survey
The Northern Ireland Life and Times Survey is a descendent of the Northern Ireland Social Attitudes Survey. It was launched in 1998 and monitors the attitudes and behaviour of people in Northern Ireland.
Opinions and Lifestyle Survey (formerly ONS Opinions Survey and ONS Omnibus Survey)
The Opinions and Lifestyle Survey is a regular multi-purpose survey, which since 2005 has run monthly covering core demographic information with non- core questions that vary from month to month.
Scottish Crime and Justice Survey
In 2008 the Scottish Crime and Justice Survey (SCJS) replaced the Scottish Crime and Victimisation Survey (following the Scottish Crime Survey). It asks about experiences and perceptions of crime in Scotland. It currently involves interviewing selected adult in 16,000 households across Scotland annually.
Scottish Health Survey
This survey provides a detailed picture of the health of the Scottish population in private households. Although surveys were undertaken in 1995, 1998 and 2003, it became continuous in 2008.
Scottish Social Attitudes Survey
The Scottish Social Attitudes Survey (SSA) is an annual sister survey to the British Social Attitudes Survey, to chart and interpret attitudes on a range of issues. The sample is based on approximately 1,600 adults and data is available on an annual basis since 1999.
Time Use Survey
The UK Time Use Survey measures the amount of time spent by the UK population on various activities. Data are collected using a household questionnaire, individual questionnaire and two 24-hour self-completion diaries.
The Vital Statistics (VS) are tabular data on births, deaths and marriages for England and Wales. Various tables are available from the UK Data Service from 1981 to 2006.
Wealth and Assets Survey
The Wealth and Assets Survey (WAS) is a longitudinal survey, which aims to address gaps identified in data about the economic well-being of households by gathering information on level of assets, savings and debt; saving for retirement; how wealth is distributed among households or individuals; and factors that affect financial planning.
Welsh Health Survey
The Welsh Health Survey (WHS), which ran from 1995-1998 and then 2003/04-2015, collected information about the health of people living in Wales, the way they use health services, and things that can affect their health. From April 2016 health and health related lifestyles are reported on using the National Survey for Wales.
Workplace Employment Relations Survey
The Workplace Employment Relations Survey (WERS) provides reliable, nationally representative data on the state of workplace relations and employment practices in Britain. Data are available for several years from 1980 in cross-sectional, panel and linked formats.
Young People’s Social Attitudes Survey
The Young People’s Social Attitudes (YPSA) survey is conducted by the National Centre for Social Research as part of the British Social Attitudes Survey. It has been conducted on an occasional basis.