The Indonesian Family Life Survey (IFLS) is an on-going longitudinal survey in Indonesia conducted by RAND, Survey Meter and the Center for Population and Policy Studies, University of Gadjah Mada. The IFLS is designed to provide data for studying behaviors and outcomes. The survey contains a wealth of information collected at the individual and household levels, including multiple indicators of economic and non-economic well-being.

In addition to individual- and household-level information, IFLS provides detailed information from the communities in which IFLS households are located and from the facilities that serve residents of those communities. These data cover aspects of the physical and social environment, infrastructure, employment opportunities, food prices, access to health and educational facilities, and the quality and prices of services available at those facilities.

Data Collection

Sample Sizes and Completion Rates
IFLS1 1993 (Baseline) Fielded between September 1993 and February 1994
7,200 households, 16,300 individual interviews
IFLS2 1997 Fielded between August 1997 and December 1997
7,500 households, 25,000 individual interviews
94% completion rate of living IFLS1 households
IFLS3 2000 Fielded between June 2000 and October 2000
10,400 households, 31,000 individual interviews
95% completion rate of living IFLS1,2 and 2+households
95.3 completion rate of original IFLS households
IFLS4 2007-08 Fielded between November 2007 and April 2008
13,500 households, 43,500 individual interviews
91.5% completion of living IFLS1, 2, 2+, and 3 households
93.6% completion of original IFLS householdsC-reactive protein assay data and documentation released in 2013
IFLS5 2014-15 Fielded in 2014-2015

·    Additional cognition modules

·    Personality module (Big Five Index)

·    Subjective well-being questions on positive and negative affect

·    Sleep disturbance and sleep impairment

Self Reported Health Measures

  • General health symptoms
  • Activities of daily living and physical functioning
  • Health care utilization (including self-care)
  • Health Insurance
  • Mental Health (adopted short version of CES-D)
  • Doctor diagnoses of chronic conditions
  • Pain in specific joints
  • Individual health vignettes
  • Cognition measures (10 word list, repeated)

Existing Household Modules from Previous IFLS waves

  • Household expenditures
  • Labor earnings and work histories
  • Household and individual assets
  • Smoking behavior
  • Religion
  • Debt and Borrowing
  • Education and migration histories
  • Links with non co-resident kin
  • Intergenerational transfers of time and money
  • Subjective living standards Intra-household decision-making
  • Community support network

New Household Modules in IFLS-5

  • Additional cognition modules, including number series from HRS
  • Debt and Borrowing
  • Personality module, based on HRS
  • Subjective well-being questions on positive and negative effect
  • Limited early childhood development questions

Existing Community Modules From Previous IFLS waves

  • Details of each of the 321 origin IFLS communities
  • Population, land, land investments (eg. irrigation), occupations, local industries, weather, natural disasters
  • Detailed prices from markets
  • Limited community information on all destination communities for migrants
  • Availability of health facilities
  • Availability of education facilities
  • Retrospective history on service availability to the community, covering the period of IFLS
  • Information on the community traditions
  • Decentralization of social services
  • Local governance
  • Government poverty alleviation programs
  • Traditional laws/customs/adat/ (updated from IFLS2) regarding many aspects of life in the community
  • Quality measures for health facilities using vignettes
  • Health Service for the elderly
  • Natural disasters in last 5 years

New Community Module in IFLS-5

  • New faculty module on kindergartens and preschools


Biomarkers collected in IFLS include:

  • Height, weight (on all HH members)
  • Waist and hip circumference and leg length (on members 40+)
  • Blood pressure (measured 3 times in 2007) (over 14 years)
  • Hemoglobin levels from blood spots using Hemocue (over 1 year) (waves 2, 3, 4, 5)
  • HbA1c (wave 5)
  • Dried blood spots (C-reactive protein assays) (waves 4 and 5)
  • Lung capacity (over 8 years)
  • Timed Sit-to-stand (over 14 years)
  • Nurse health assessment
  • Cholesterol (non-fasting total and HDL) – over 40 (wave 4)
  • Grip strength (over 14 years)

User Guide


Papers from the IFLS

Thomas, D., Seeman, T., Potter, A., Hu, P., Crimmins, E., Herningtyas, E. H., … & Frankenberg, E. (2018). HPLC-based Measurement of Glycated Hemoglobin using Dried Blood Spots Collected under Adverse Field Conditions. Biodemography and social biology, 64(1), 43-62.