European Social Survey Topline Report released

This week sees the release of the European Social Survey’s “Topline” Report on Attitudes to Immigration, written by Anthony Heath and Lindsay Richards. Anthony Heath has led the pan-European team that worked together to develop this module in the ESS, making it one of the most detailed investigations into immigration attitudes, and with the broadest […]


Figure 2: Trends in food insecurity, 2002-2015, Sources: Trussell Trust, FareShare, English Longitudinal Study of Ageing

Is food insecurity rising in the UK?

The well-publicised growth in the number of people using foodbanks has served to establish food insecurity as a critical social policy issue facing the UK. Debates have considered whether this reported growth reflects genuine need, or whether data on the number of food parcels distributed by foodbanks capture an underlying problem that has only recently […]

Second CSI newsletter published

Welcome to the Centre for Social Investigation eNewsletter. Please click on the individual items below or on the link at the bottom of the page to view the full newsletter.   New Research New report on foodbank use in West Cheshire with the Trussell Trust and University of Chester. The report – entitled #stillhungry – explored in […]



It’s employment status, not class, that affects mental health

Lindsay Richards, University of Oxford and Marii Paskov, University of Oxford For the last few decades, research into social determinants of health and well-being seemed to tell a simple story: the poorer you are, or the lower your class, the worse your health and well-being is likely to be. The gradient can be replicated with […]

Are parents too busy for their kids these days?

Does modern life mean that parents are too busy to spend quality time with their children? In contemporary Britain mothers have been entering the labour market in greater numbers than in the past and there have been plenty of other societal changes too: lone parenthood has increased, marriage rates declined, and parenthood delayed. Gender roles […]

Figure 2

Figure 2: Muslims are the religious group with the greatest language difficulties, particularly among women
Source: 2011 Census, England table CT0557

Muslim penalties in the labour market: Why do women fare so badly?

Ethnic minorities face well-documented penalties in the labour market. From higher levels of poverty and unemployment to lower wages and reduced social mobility, members of ethnic minority communities enjoy lower success in the labour market than the majority White British. Yet, this focus on ethnicity – while unquestionably important – has sometimes served to overlook […]

Foodbank reasons for referral

Emergency food in Britain: What next for social policy?

This week saw the publication of research on foodbank use in Britain conducted by the universities of Oxford and Chester, with the Trussell Trust. The report – entitled – #stillhungry – draws on four years’ referrals to West Cheshire Foodbank to provide an in-depth exploration of UK foodbank use. More specifically, the research explored additional […]

#stillhungry – new research on foodbank use in West Cheshire

The Centre for Social Investigation were commissioned by the West Cheshire Foodbank – which is part of the Trussell Trust foodbank network – to undertake detailed research into two years’ of referrals to West Cheshire Foodbank. This research provides some of the most systematic and detailed information ever presented about people receiving emergency food in […]

food-bank image

Figure 1 Distribution of people into different SSS categories (0-10) in Belgium (BE), the Netherlands (NL), Slovenia (SI) and Ukraine (UA), % (European Social Survey, 2012)

Is social status inequality bad for the mental health of nations?

Thinking about social status, what would the ‘ideal’ type of society look like? Imagine social status as an entirely subjective matter, where individuals place themselves on an imaginary ladder based on where they think or feel they stand in the society… Would a society be ‘status equal’ (more egalitarian) if all its inhabitants tended to […]