Neil Smith is the Head of Analysis in the Evaluation and Analysis team at NatCen. He has over 15 years’ experience of quantitative research spent mostly in academia where he developed his expertise designing, managing and disseminating results from the analysis of longitudinal data.
His research specialises in the social determinants of the health, wellbeing and development of children. Since joining NatCen in 2016 he has led a number of schools-based surveys for the Department for Education investigating character education, mental health provision and schools’ experiences of work placements, as well evaluating the impact of the roll-out of the 30 hours funded childcare policy on parents and childcare providers. His recent work has involved secondary data analysis for the Office of the Children’s Commissioner to explore the scope of childhood vulnerability in England and he has carried out an extensive analysis into the impact of cultural and sporting participation on mental health and wellbeing on behalf the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. He is currently the Principal Investigator of an Economic and Social Research Council ‘Secondary Data Analysis Initiative’ grant which is investigating the links between adolescent mental health and wellbeing and later life chances, as well as a UKRI Covid-19 rapid response project investigating the socioeconomic impacts of the pandemic on mental health.