What we do

What we do


Young Lives is a unique international study of childhood poverty following the changing lives of 12,000 children in 4 countries – Ethiopia, India (in the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana), Peru and Vietnam - over 15 years.

We are following two groups of children in each country:

  • 2,000 children who were born in 2001-02; and
  • 1,000 children who were born in 1994-95.

Through a household survey, interspersed with in-depth interviews, group work and case studies, we are collecting a wealth of information not only about the children's material and social circumstances, but also their perspectives and aspirations, set against the environmental and social realities of their communities.

The fact that our work spans 15 years in the lives of these children – covering all ages from early infancy into young adulthood – means that we are also able to examine how children change over time, whether growing up in rural or urban contexts, poor or not-so-poor areas, in large families or as migrants, and a variety of other factors.

The unique dual-cohort design of Young Lives also allows us to see how circumstances for the Younger Cohort have changed compared with the Older Cohort 7 years previously. And our comparative four-country perspective allows us to report on trends and the policy implications for other low- and middle-income countries and contexts.

Young Lives cohort study design

We completed fieldwork for Round 4 of the household and child survey in early 2014 and have released preliminary findings. We expect to archive the Round 4 data in early 2016.



New publications

Young Lives Theory of Change

YL-Theory of Change







Our Theory of Change offers a framework for achieving our core agenda and reflects our processes of sharing, learning and reflection.

We need to end child poverty in order to break the cycle of poverty.