Laura Carter, Lecturer in British history and member of LARCA, has been awarded a Visiting Fellowship at the University of Oxford for the autumn semester 2023, as part of Université Paris Cité’s Paris-Oxford Partnership (POP).
During her time in Oxford, Laura will work on the project ‘Big data, ordinary lives: social-historical approaches to British birth cohort data’.
This project aims to strengthen and deepen ties between scholars at Oxford and Paris working on data from British national and local longitudinal birth cohorts, especially the oldest and longest-running national longitudinal study, the National Survey of Health and Development (NSHD) (1946 birth cohort).
These studies have followed representative samples of people born in Britain since the Second World War. The datasets are traditionally used by medical scientists, sociologists and economists, as the basis for some of the most important global research into disease, nutrition, public health, social mobility, and inequality. Laura’s project, alongside colleagues in Oxford and around the UK, focuses on developing interdisciplinary, mixed-methods approaches to the data for historians of postwar Britain. Laura will dedicate her time in Oxford to writing up research for a forthcoming book on secondary education in the postwar United Kingdom, as well as organising a series of seminars.
The seminars will explore how the birth cohort data can be used to write histories education, childhood, and women’s health in postwar Britain. Each seminar will place historians in dialogue with a medical scientist, sociologist, economist, or data manager working on the same theme.