Inequality and Statistics

2013 Conference and AGM: York

Saturday 23 February, 2013

Priory Street Centre  15 Priory Street, York YO1 6ET

 Printable programme (pdf)

Speaker presentations now available! See programme below.

Tweet archive of #Radstats 2013 conference available via Storify

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8:30-9:00: Coffee & Registration 

Each 90-minute session has a main speaker who (with brief Q&A) will take up to 40 minutes. This is followed by two 5-minute ‘tasters’ from contributing speakers, after which each attendee will follow one of the speakers (main or contributing) for a break-out session and further discussion until the end of the session.

 9:25:  Introduction and welcome from John Bibby

Session 1 – 9:30: “Inequalities – Gathering the Evidence”

Jonathan Bradshaw: “The Legacy of Rowntree”
The findings of ‘Poverty: A Study of Town Life’ are still relevant today. There has not been a survey of poverty in York since Rowntree’s 1955 study. This presentation presents some of the administrative data which reveals the nature of poverty and inequality today.

View presentation.

Response: Roy Carr-Hill: “Non-Household Populations:
Implications for Measuring Inequality”

View presentation.

Contributed paper:

  • Liz Hind: John Snow of York and Liverpool, and the use of his work in the classroom Death by Numbers – Liverpool, Cholera and the application of Snow’s work. This workshop will study the statistics compiled during 1866 in Liverpool. Did the public health officer ignore the work of John Snow, or was it more complicated than that? View presentation.

This “YPS/Radical Statistics Lecture” is part-sponsored by the Yorkshire Philosophical Society.

11:00: Coffee

Session 2 – 11:30:    “New Censuses, New Geographies: Beyond 2021

Danny Dorling: “The 2011 Census: What surprises are emerging and how they show that cancellation is stupid”
Danny Dorling’s research focuses on the changing social, political and medical geographies in Britain and elsewhere, and social and spatial inequalities to life chances and how these may be narrowed. He has written and edited many influential books on social inequality, including ‘You Think You Know About Britain?’ and ‘Fair Play: A Reader on Social Justice’.

View presentation.

Tarani Chandola:  “Spatial segregation and socioeconomic inequalities in health in Brazilian cities: combining spatial and social epidemiology”

View presentation.

Contributed Papers:

    • Russell Ecob: Proportional representation voting – some new proposals. View presentation.

  • David Byrne: Misleading uses of population projections in planning disputes. View presentation.

1:00pm: Lunch

  • Contributed poster: Sophie Wickham: Why does social inequality affect mental health? 
  • Contributed paper: Dougal Hutchison: Equity and the Success of the Sarva Shiksa Abhiyan Programme in Providing Equality of Opportunity in IndiaView presentation.

Session 3 – 2:00:  “Beyond ‘The Spirit Level’”
This session aims to build on “The Spirit Level” by Wilkinson and Pickett, with responses from the authors and others. It will assume some familiarity with the ideas and techniques expressed in the book.

Ben Baumberg and Robert de Vries: ‘Statistical Catfights and the Spirit Level’
This paper will discuss whether the argument over the negative effects of inequality can be settled using current evidence; and also whether this argument has harmfully politicised social science. 

Ben is founder and co-editor of ‘Inequalitiesblog’ and Lecturer at the University of Kent.  Robert is Research Fellow in Sociology at the University of Oxford and contributes regularly to Inequalitiesblog.

View presentation.

Response: Professor Richard Wilkinson

Richard Wilkinson has played a formative role in international research on the social determinants of health and on the societal effects of income inequality. He is Professor Emeritus of Social Epidemiology at the University of Nottingham Medical School, Honorary Professor at University College London and a Visiting Professor at the University of York. Richard co-wrote The Spirit Level with Kate Pickett and is a co-founder of The Equality Trust.


Contributed papers:

    • Noortje Uphoff & Annie Quick: Born in Bradford – Studying maternal and child health in an ethnically diverse population with marked social inequality.
  • Jeff Evans: Governing by Numbers in the Globalising World – PIAAC and the international assessment of adult numeracy. View presentation. No video available.

3:30: Coffee Session 4 – 4:00: “Futures for the New Generation (and the next riots)”

This session explores transgenerational futures - education, housing, jobs and other areas.

Stewart Lansley: “Inequality: Its role in the crash and the crisis”
The speaker examines the extent to which inequality caused the 2008 crash and the current crisis, what has been happening to income gaps in the UK and the US , and what can be done to return inequality to the levels of the first post-war decades.

Stewart Lansley is Visiting Fellow at the Townsend Centre for International Poverty Research and the author of The Cost of Inequality: Why Economic Equality is Essential for Recovery , Gibson Square, 2012.

View presentation.


5:00: Close

This conference is part of the Radical Statistics weekend which also includes (all located at the Priory Centre):

Friday 22nd      6-9pm Social event and meal
Saturday 23rd  8-11pm 1st York Radical Cabaret, brought to you by Rory Motion, of Glastonbury and Radio 4.
Sunday 24th:  10.30am Radical Statistics Annual General Meeting – All welcome.
12:00 Guided tour of York  led by Stephen Lusty (official York tour guide and Chair of the Yorkshire Philosophical Society)

For programme queries please email the conference organiser, John Bibby.
For general inquiries email the RadStats administrator, Alistair Cairns.

It may be possible to arrange accommodation with RadStats members in the area.
Ace Hotel/hostel is very nearby and recommended or view a list of local accommodation.
- Please stay for the weekend if you can!