Longitudinal population studies

Over the past ten years, we’ve invested more than £120 million in longitudinal population studies in the UK and low- and middle-income countries. 

These studies have transformed understanding of the relationship between people’s health and the environment, such as the influence of early life experiences on later life.

Why it’s important

Longitudinal population studies track the health of a large group of people over time. They’re a powerful way of exploring the many influences that shape people’s lives – from their genes and the way they choose to live, to their local environment and the services they access – and how these come together to affect their health. 

They are extremely valuable resources for researchers, who can use the findings to understand what drives health and health inequalities in different groups of people, and build on this knowledge to make scientific breakthroughs that improve health. 

What we’re doing

We’ve funded a number of ground-breaking longitudinal population studies over the years, from UK Biobank to 100M Brazil.

We support and fund longitudinal population studies, including cohorts, panel surveys and biobanks, through Longitudinal Population Study Grants.

We also welcome applications which use data from longitudinal population studies to answer important scientific questions, but we consider these through our other funding schemes, for example Investigator Awards.

Read our strategy for funding longitudinal population studies [PDF 166KB].

Studies we already support

We currently support a number of longitudinal population studies in the UK and low- and middle-income countries. These include: 

UK

Low- and middle-income countries

Networks of longitudinal population studies