Radstats Issue 131 Editorial

Issue 131 is available, open access, at https://www.radstats.org.uk/journal/issue131.


Following on from the discussions at the London Conference in February 2020, I asked contributors if they would agree to a student converting their power-point presentations into short texts. This has again been partly successful this year. We did manage to get two of the presentations at the 2021 Conference converted to text and these
were included in the last issue.

In this, relatively short, issue we have two very interesting articles by Serena Hussein questioning Census Categories and Paul Marchant on Road Safety; two thought-provoking reviews by John Bibby; and my usual take on COVID-19 statistics.

Prospects for RSN 132

We have at least one article promised for RSN 132, but, clearly, we are going to need more and our administrator has put out a call for contributions to the List. Our new Review Editor, Irina Motoc also has several books for review [contact editors@radstats.org.uk to review a book]. Another proposal for generating material was the relatively recent publication of the third RadStats compendium, Data in Society, which was presented by the books’ editors on Saturday 28th 2020. It is a landmark publication, bringing together many of the crucial issues around the production and use of quantitative information.

The contributors to Data in Society summarise many of the concerns around the accessibility and use of statistics in contemporary society. Examples include the lack of data from banking and financial organisations hides the extent of tax evasion of taxation. Government agencies are reducing the number of data series they make available for public scrutiny. The number of healthcare treatments in Britain
provided by private groups is growing steadily.

The book is an eye-opener on the difficulties in holding governments and large organisations to account. Do you agree with the authors’ interpretations? As the editors acknowledge there are data topics the volume does not cover in detail. These include the use of statistics by legal practitioners, housing and homelessness data and climate change data.

Radical Statistics Newsletter Issue 131 2022

The editors of the RadStats journal have been planning to devote one journal issue to topics raised by Data in Society, and to topics not discussed in the book. Could you write an article for the journal on any of the topics above? Are there are areas of debate missing from Data in Society?

Administrative Issues

As the Administrator informed those receiving printed copies of the issue that, at the AGM held in London at the end of February 2020, the decision was taken to raise the subscription from £25 to £35 for those wishing to continue to receive printed copies (whilst the membership subscription only – with online access – would remain at £25 for those £10 for those on low incomes), otherwise they would be taken off the distribution list which originally includes all 300+ members.

The theme of the 2022 Conference is ‘Taxing Wealth, Reducing Inequality’ It is on Saturday 26th February and is being ‘hosted’ by the Literary and Philosophical Society of Newcastle upon Tyne. We expect the 2022 Conference will be predominantly remote and virtual. There are still preparation and ongoing costs. We are asking for
a donation; the suggested amount is £20, however all smaller donations will help cover the costs.

Please make sure you have updated your subscription, or make a donation! – by going to www.radstats.org.uk/membership/ where you can pay by cheque, standing order, PayPal – or by filling in your details on page 45.

Review Editor