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Public Engagement in Longer Lives

About the study

Increasing longevity presents one of our greatest opportunities – but also one of our most difficult challenges. Rethinking how we live our longer lives well requires us to reconsider both what we do – in terms of work, family life, building social connections, learning, physical activity, providing care – and when we do it.

In light of this, Phoenix Insights, a new centre of research, ideas and public engagement, has commissioned NatCen to find out what people think about when they think of living longer lives today and how this might be improved for themselves and others in the future.

In November and December 2021, NatCen conducted a series of online workshops with a wide range of people from different backgrounds and circumstances across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to hear their views on how to lead better longer lives in relation to working, learning and connecting. A selection of participants from those workshops then took part in the second phase of research, carrying out peer research with family and friends. Participants who took part in both phases of the research are now being re-contacted to take part in the final phase of the research; a national summit. This phase will involve sharing views and experiences around living longer lives and working with key stakeholders to develop broad suggestions for helping people to live better longer lives. This will be carried out across two sessions of 2 hours 30 minutes each, two weeks apart. The summit will be held on Zoom.

Who is carrying out the research?

NatCen Social Research (NatCen) is an independent, not-for-profit, social research organisation that has been carrying out high quality social research for over 50 years. We are commissioned by government and charities to uncover the real views of people in Britain today. What we find out is used to inform policy and make a difference to the lives of people across the nation. King’s College London are also involved in delivering the research.

What’s involved?

  • You will be invited to attend an online workshop via Zoom where you will have the opportunity to share your views and experiences around living longer lives with experts working in the research area.
  • You will work with key experts to develop a set of broad policy priorities to help people to live better longer lives.
  • Taking part is voluntary – you do not have to take part if you don’t want to and you can always change your mind.
  • Everything you share will be confidential and only the research team from NatCen and King’s College London and the topic experts will know you have taken part. These experts and their role in the summit will be explained at the start of the session. NatCen will store your information securely and your name will not be in the published report.
  • As a thank you, you’ll receive £100 if you attend both sessions.

Why have I been selected to take part?

You have been approached to take part in this research as you took part in one of the Longer Lives workshops in November and December 2021, and the peer research in January and February 2022.

Why take part?

This is a great opportunity to have your views heard. The research will help decision-makers better understand how people in different regions across the UK see living longer lives and how this could change going forward. Taking part is voluntary - you do not have to take part if you don’t want to and you can always change your mind.

Do I need to prepare for this research?

You do not need to prepare for this research, nor do you need any special knowledge to take part. We are interested in your experiences and views around living longer lives.

What will I receive for taking part?

You will receive £100 after attending both sessions. You must attend both sessions to receive the £100.

Can I request special arrangements?

If you need any special arrangements to take part, let us know and we will be happy to help. For instance, you might need adjustments because of a disability or health condition. You can send us an email at or call us on 0808 168 8519.

What will happen to any information I give?

We will treat the information you give us in the strictest confidence under the Data Protection Act 2018 and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). NatCen will combine the findings from the online workshops, the peer research and the national summit and write a report for Phoenix Insights. No names or other personal details will be included in the report.

We will not share your contact details with third parties. Your personal details will not be held for any longer than is necessary and will be securely deleted once the research has been completed.

Are there any exceptions to how my personal information will be dealt with?

If you say something which indicates that you or someone else might be at risk of harm, we may have to tell the emergency or social services. Depending on individual circumstances, we will try to discuss this with you first.

Who funds the study?

The study is funded by Phoenix Insights, a new centre of research, ideas and public engagement, created to challenge society to help everyone live better longer lives.

Where can I find out more?

For anything not covered here, please contact Olivia Lucas, Senior Researcher at NatCen, on

Privacy notice

For more information on how NatCen will handle your personal information, please refer to the privacy notice.