About Our Future

Since 2013, when you were in year 9, you and over 13,000 others your age have been involved in the Our Future study. The chances of being involved in this study were very small.

Our Future is an unusual study because between 2013 and 2021 respondents were surveyed every year. The survey took a break in 2022 but is now back with a short online survey for 2023. Surveys this big which follow respondents over a long period of time are rare. You are part of something unique and special.

So far…
So far, you will have completed multiple years of surveys. Thank you! By completing a survey every year, your previous answers can be used alongside the new findings to understand the changes in your life. This means that the survey findings get more valuable every year we collect information from you, and information we collected when you were younger is still useful. The questions change slightly over the years to make sure they are relevant to what you’re doing now.

What topics are covered by the survey?
The survey covers a range of topics including:

  • What your main activities are nowadays
  • Health matters, such as sleep
  • Some of your personal opinions and attitudes

What do I have to do?
The survey took a break in 2022 but is now back. You should have recently received a letter and email with details about how you can take part in this year's survey. It will be a much shorter survey in 2023 taking around 10 minutes to complete to find out about what you are currently doing. You don’t have to tell us anything you don’t want to. Once you’ve finished, that’s it until next year. If you want to keep up with the latest findings, you can read the newsletters we send.

How was I selected?
To ensure that we included people from a wide range of backgrounds, your school was randomly selected. You were then randomly selected from all the pupils in year 9 in your school.

Who is this research for?
Our Future is a flagship study that is carried out by the social research agency Verian (formerly known as Kantar Public). The information from the surveys is used by all government departments (not just the Department for Education), as well as academics and independent researchers. Research reports based on the findings from the study are available for anyone to read.

Why not have a look at the published research reports? There are lots of research reports on a broad range of topics, please follow the links below:

To make sure we create the best policies for young people, it is essential we understand how young people’s lives are changing and what path they are choosing to take.

Who funds the research?
Our Future is funded by the Department for Education. The Department knows that it is really important to understand young people when making decisions that affect them.

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