Published Papers - Abstract 365

Warner-Smith P, Loxton D & Brown J. Human resources for longitudinal studies: Matching people to skills and tasks. International Journal of Multiple Research Approaches, 2007; 1(2): 92-103

This paper describes the practical tasks that longitudinal studies involve, the skills necessary to complete those tasks, and the organisational issues that are pertinent to conducting longitudinal research. We first focus on the decision about whether to conduct the study in-house, or to outsource part or all of the work. We discuss the desirable qualities of the people responsible for carrying out the project tasks, and the importance of creatively matching the work to the skills and experience of the people in the organisation. The critical issues of continuity and succession planning are then addressed before we finish with a brief discussion of organisational structure.Throughout the paper, examples from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health (ALSWH) are used to illustrate the issues at hand. The paper is one of a suite of eleven papers which address the practicalities of running a longitudinal study.