Britain: a country divided?

John Hills, professor of social policy at LSE, and Dr Polly Vizard gave another lecture in the LSE Works series on Thursday, March 3, 2011. Sponsored by SAGE, this lecture series showcases the fundamental insights of LSE’s Research Centres and offers an opportunity for discourse on various findings.

Attended by 150, this lecture was held at the Hong Kong Theatre at Clement House and focused on the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion (CASE). Founded in 1997, CASE is a multi-disciplinary research centre and studies the impact of social disadvantages and the policies related to these difficulties. Professor Hills is the director at CASE and Dr Vizard is one of the centre’s research fellows.

During the lecture, the discussion revolved around the recent work of the National Equality Panel and the implications of the Equality Measurement Framework (EMF). The National Equality Panel researched the relationships between economic outcomes and the characteristics of the people who experience these results. On the other hand, the EMF analyses multidimensional inequalities.

While the lecture indicated a large degree of economic inequality, Professor Hills noted the narrowness of judging inequality solely based on economic measures. Proceeding from this idea, Dr Vizard described a capability list of ten life domains as a better means of analysing quality of life and wellbeing. Dr Vizard further suggested a dashboard approach in accomplishing a comprehensive citizen wellbeing analysis instead of a single metric like economic situation.

Sir Tony Atkinson, centennial professor in the Department of Economics at LSE, and David Darton, Director of Foresight at the Equality and Human Rights Commission, both gave responses to the lecturers on these views.

Slides and audio are available from this event.

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