Cambridge Study in Delinquent Development [Great Britain], 1961-1981 (ICPSR 8488)

Principal Investigator(s): Farrington, David P.


This data collection effort, initiated by Dr. Donald J. West and continued by Dr. David Farrington, was undertaken to test several hypotheses about delinquency. The investigators examined socioeconomic conditions, schooling, friendship, parent-child relationships, extracurricular activities, school records, and criminal records. They also performed psychological tests to determine the causes of crime and delinquency. Information in the survey includes reports from peers, family size, child-rearing behavior, job histories, leisure habits, truancy, popularity, physical attributes, tendencies toward violence, sexual activity, and self-reported delinquency.

Access Notes

  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.


DS1:  Data File - Download All Files (13.811 MB)
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ASCII + SAS Setup    SPSS Setup    Stata Setup   
DS2:  SAS Data Definition Statements - Download All Files (0.547 MB)

ASCII + SAS Setup   

Study Description


Farrington, David P. Cambridge Study in Delinquent Development [Great Britain], 1961-1981. ICPSR08488-v2. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 1994.

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This study was funded by:

  • Home Office (United Kingdom)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    aggression, arrests, children, crime, delinquent behavior, education, families, friendships, interpersonal relations, job history, leisure, quality of life, recreation, sexual attitudes, social attitudes, youths

Geographic Coverage:    Global, Great Britain

Time Period:   

  • 1961--1981

Date of Collection:   

  • 1984

Universe:    Population of young male children from a working-class urban area in Cambridge.

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

A knowledge of British criminal justice terminology would be helpful for those using the data. Various British governmental and law enforcement institutions are mentioned. Variables concerning the socioeconomic status of respondents, schools attended, and personality characteristics use code explanations that are not fully documented. The principal investigator has offered to consult with researchers on the use of the data. Contact Professor David Farrington, Institute of Criminology, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT, England.


Sample:    The major part of the sample was chosen by taking all boys aged 8-9 who were on the registers of six state primary schools located within a one-mile radius of a research office that had been established.

Data Source:

personal interviews

Extent of Processing:   ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.


Original ICPSR Release:   1986-08-18

Version History:

  • 2005-11-04 On 2005-03-14 new files were added to one or more datasets. These files included additional setup files as well as one or more of the following: SAS program, SAS transport, SPSS portable, and Stata system files. The metadata record was revised 2005-11-04 to reflect these additions.

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