Locating Mobile Families

2 November 2010

Lisa Calderwood’s new CLS Working Paper looks at how successful we’ve been in locating families who move between successive MCS surveys.

CLS Working Paper 2010/7 Keeping in touch with mobile families in the UK Millennium Cohort Study, by Lisa Calderwood, is now available.

This paper focuses on the problem of locating mobile families in the Millennium Cohort Study, and examines what proportion of families who move between waves are successfully located through the study’s tracking procedures.

It also examines the effectiveness of techniques designed to pick up address changes prior to the start of fieldwork for a particular wave compared with interviewer tracking in the field and investigates some of the factors associated with success or failure to locate mobile families.

It shows that over 9 in 10 mobile families were successfully located between wave 2 and wave 3 of the study with the majority (55%) located before the start of fieldwork for second wave.

Although some differences are found in the observable demographic and socio-economic characteristics of mobile and non-mobile families, very few of these characteristics are associated with the success or failure to locate families.