The Department of Business Innovation and Skills supported by a number of other Departments and Agencies recently commissioned the first wave of the UK Longitudinal Small Business Survey or LSBS. Covering around 15,500 respondents in 2015 the LSBS is intended to:

  • Improve our understanding of what drives and constrains business performance and growth by addressing evidence gaps relating to the lags between many business activities and associated performance outcomes.
  • Provide improved data on current business performance and the factors that affect this. The larger survey size will provide more reliable findings for key sub-groups of the business population and in relation to activities such as seeking finance which are only relevant to part of the sample.

The survey builds on previous Small Business Surveys but is broader in scope and larger in size. It is the intention to repeat the current survey with an updated sample each year for the next five years. Details of previous Small Business Surveys can be found here.

Anonymised data from the first wave of the LSBS will be deposited in the UK Data Archive in March/April 2016 following the publication of the initial analysis report by the Department. An overview of the survey structure and ambition is available here.

An LSBS User Group of interested researchers has been established to share research ideas and experiences of using the LSBS. If you have any queries about the LSBS or would be interested in joining the User Group please contact either Ian Drummond (, Stephen Roper ( or Jiao Liu (