Associate Professor Benjamin Edwards

Associate Professor of Child and Youth Development and Longitudinal Studies

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



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.

  • Liu, R, Wake, M, Grobler, A et al 2019, 'Cross-sectional associations between Ideal Cardiovascular Health scores and vascular phenotypes in 11- to 12-year-olds and their parents: The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children', International Journal of Cardiology, vol. 277, pp. 258-265.

  • Edwards, B, Gray, M & Hunter, B 2019, 'The social and economic impacts of drought', Australian Journal of Social Issues, vol. 54, no. 1, pp. 22-31.

  • Hanly, M, Edwards, B, Goldfeld, S et al 2019, 'School starting age and child development in a state-wide, population-level cohort of children in their first year of school in New South Wales, Australia', Early Childhood Research Quarterly, vol. 48, pp. 325-340.

  • Edwards, B, Forrest, W, Vassallo, S et al 2019, 'Depression and anxiety in adolescent and young adult offenders: A longitudinal study from 13 to 32 years using the Australian Temperament Project', Journal of Criminal Justice, vol. 62, pp. 87-93.

  • Lau, W, Silove, D & Edwards, B 2018, 'Adjustment of refugee children and adolescents in Australia: outcomes from wave three of the Building a New Life in Australia study', BMC Medicine, vol. 16, no. 157, pp. 1-17pp.

  • Edwards, B & Yu, M 2018, 'The influence of child care on the behavior problems of children of teenage mothers', Children and Youth Services Review, vol. 94, pp. 96-104.

  • Osborn, W, Simm, P, Olds, T et al 2018, 'Bone health, activity and sedentariness at age 11-12 years: Cross-sectional Australian population-derived study', Bone, vol. 112, pp. 153-160pp.

  • Edwards, B, Smart, D, de Maio, J et al 2018, 'Cohort Profile: Building a New Life in Australia (BNLA): the longitudinal study of humanitarian migrants', International Journal of Epidemiology, vol. 47, no. 1, pp. 9pp.

  • Forrest, W, Edwards, B & Daraganova, G 2018, 'The intergenerational consequences of war: anxiety, depression, suicidality, and mental health among the children of war veterans', International Journal of Epidemiology, vol. 47, no. 4, pp. 1060-1067pp.

  • Bryant, R, Edwards, B, Creamer, M et al 2018, 'The effect of post-traumatic stress disorder on refugees' parenting and their children's mental health: a cohort study', The Lancet Public Health, vol. 3, no. 5, pp. E249-E258.

  • Edwards, B, Gray, M & Hunter, B 2018, 'The social and economic impacts of drought', Australian Journal of Social Issues, 53(4): 1–10. DOI: 10.1002/ajs4.52 .

  • Biddle, N & Edwards, B 2017, The Characteristics and Potential Effects of the Schools that Indigenous Australians Attend.

  • Wong, M, Olds, T, Gold, L et al 2017, 'Time-Use Patterns and Health-Related Quality of Life in Adolescents', Pediatrics (English edition), vol. 140, no. 1, pp. 9pp.

  • Doidge, J, Edwards, B, Higgins, D et al 2017, 'Adverse childhood experiences, non-response and loss to follow-up: Findings from a prospective birth cohort and recommendations for addressing missing data', Longitudinal and Life Course Studies, vol. 8, no. 4, pp. 382-400pp.

  • Liu, R, Mensah, F, Carlin, J et al 2017, 'Socioeconomic Position Is Associated With Carotid Intima-Media Thickness in Mid-Childhood: The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children', American Heart Association, Journal, vol. 6, no. 8, pp. 1-16.

  • Doidge, J, Higgins, D, Delfabbro, P et al 2017, 'Economic predictors of child maltreatment in an Australian population-based birth cohort', Children and Youth Services Review, vol. 72, pp. 14-25pp.

  • Miller, P, Butler, E, Richardson, B et al 2016, 'Relationships between problematic alcohol consumption and delinquent behaviour from adolescence to young adulthood', Drug and Alcohol Review, vol. 35, no. 3, pp. 317-325.

  • Vassallo, S, Lahausse, J & Edwards, B 2016, 'Factors affecting stability and change in risky driving from late adolescence to the late twenties', Accident Analysis and Prevention, vol. 88, pp. 77-87pp.

  • Vassallo, S, Edwards, B & Forrest, W 2016, 'Childhood behavior problems and fighting in early adulthood: What factors are protective?', Journal of Criminal Justice, vol. 45, pp. 85-93.

  • Jenkinson, R, Silbert, M, de Maio, J et al 2016, 'Settlement experiences of recently arrived humanitarian migrants: Building a New Life in Australia-Wave 1', Family Matters, no. 97, pp. 82-82.

  • Forrest, W, Edwards, B & Vassallo, S 2014, 'Individual differences in the concordance of self-reports and official records', Criminal Behaviour and Mental Health, vol. 24, no. 4, pp. 305-315pp.

  • Vassallo, S, Edwards, B, Renda, J et al 2014, 'Bullying in Early Adolescence and Antisocial Behavior and Depression Six Years Later: What Are the Protective Factors?', Journal of School Violence, vol. 13, no. 1, pp. 100-124pp.

  • Renda, J, Vassallo, S & Edwards, B 2011, 'Bullying in early adolescence and its association with anti-social behaviour, criminality and violence 6 and 10 years later', Criminal Behaviour and Mental Health, vol. 21, no. 2, pp. 117-127pp.