Associate Professor Benjamin Edwards

BA (Honours Psychology), PhD (Psychology)
Associate Professor of Child and Youth Development and Longitudinal Studies
College of Arts and Social Sciences

Areas of expertise

  • Developmental Psychology And Ageing 170102
  • Psychological Methodology, Design And Analysis 170110
  • Family And Household Studies 160301
  • Early Childhood Education (Excl. Maori) 130102
  • Social Policy 160512

Research interests

Children and adolescent development: understanding the impact of social and family environments and institutions (e.g. family structure, parental employment, ECEC and school, housing, neighbourhoods);

Advancing longitudinal studies of human development through:

  • combining large-scale surveys and linked administrative data to maximal effect; 
  • biosocial assessments in cohort studies;
  • computerised assessment of cognitive and social and emotional functioning, event history and time use diary methods.

Evaluation of government programs for disadvantaged children: particularly area based initiatives;

Carers: caring for a family member with a disability;

The impact of drought and climate change on populations; and

The intergenerational impacts of traumatic experiences in refugee families or offspring of war veterans.


Associate Professor Ben Edwards is a Senior Fellow at the ANU Centre for Social Research and Methods where he is focused on policy relevant research on child and youth development and advising and supporting longitudinal studies (Growing Up in Australia: The Longitudinal Study of Australian Childrenthe Longitudinal Study of Australian Youth, Ten to Men, and a new longitudinal of children in the Philippines).  Internationally, he advised the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) on the measurement of non-cognitive skills in longitudinal studies.  Ben is Co-Editor of the Australian Journal of Social Issues.     

He is an expert in longitudinal studies of child and youth development, linkage of administrative data to surveys and longitudinal studies of disadvantaged groups such as refugees. 

Associate Professor Edwards has undertaken consultancies for the OECD, the Australian Government Departments of Prime Minister and Cabinet, Social Services, Education, the New South Wales Departments of Premier and Cabinet, Families and Community Services as well as the Benevolent Society and the Smith Family. 

For a link to my publications see



Researcher's projects

Natural disasters and child and youth development

Place Based Initiatives and child development

Refugee families and child and youth development

Developmental criminology

Experimental studies of data linkage consent


Available student projects

I am interested in developing the next generation of social scientists who have strong quantitative skills and an interest in child and youth development research influencing social policy.  I am available to supervise PhD projects in the following areas:

  • Natural disasters and children and youth development  
  • Refugee children and youth
  • Impacts of public policy on children and youth 

My work uses large-scale longitudinal surveys and administrative data. Students under my supervision will develop skills in working with such data




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Updated:  04 October 2022 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers