Research Report

A Longitudinal, Mixed-Methods Approach to Exploring the Impacts of Housing on Health and Wellbeing



Garnham L & Rolfe S (2020) A Longitudinal, Mixed-Methods Approach to Exploring the Impacts of Housing on Health and Wellbeing. SAGE Research Methods Cases: Medicine and Health. SAGE Publications.

Researchers often face problems when trying to unpack the causal pathways embedded in complex social processes, such as between poverty, housing, and poor health. Difficulties in pinning down cause and effect relationships and identifying how these relationships work in different contexts make it challenging to understand how one set of circumstances, action, or intervention could lead to a particular outcome. However, it is important to improve our understanding of these processes, so that we can influence the design of health and social care systems that work to improve health and reduce inequalities. In this case study, we reflect on our research into the health and wellbeing impacts of different approaches to housing provision and explore the benefits and challenges of undertaking longitudinal, mixed-methods research to address some of these difficulties. In using these methodologies, we faced a number of challenges around recruitment and retention, as well as strains on resources during both data collection and analysis. We outline how we dealt with these challenges and show how the use of a longitudinal, mixed-methods approach was crucial to producing a powerful dataset, which helped to answer a number of important questions.

health (housing); tenants; wellbeing; organizations; housing; waves; housing associations; households; recruitment; housing organizations; property; community-based housing; landlords

FundersMRC Medical Research Council
Title of seriesSAGE Research Methods Cases: Medicine and Health
Publication date31/12/2020
Publication date online03/02/2020

People (1)


Dr Steve Rolfe

Dr Steve Rolfe

Lecturer in Social Policy, Sociology, Social Policy & Criminology

Projects (1)