Month: December 2011

  • Christmas break 2011

    We’re taking a break from the blog for a couple of weeks over Christmas after our first full-year’s blogging, but we’ll be back from Tuesday 3rd January 2012. Have a good break until then! Ben and Brendan

  • A new agenda focused on health and community development

    The health promotion field should start paying attention to community development, and vice versa. In the November issue of Health Affairs several authors (including my friend and mentor David Erickson) make the argument for better collaboration between practitioners, advocates, and developers around the shared goals of revitalizing neighborhoods. One important contribution of this issue is […]

  • Conditionality and the deservingness of benefit claimants

    In this, the final of three posts responding to John Humphrys’ Future State of Welfare, I consider whether the benefits system should be conditional on taking crap jobs or making people take steps back towards the labour market.  It’s relatively easy to sit back and cherry-pick misleading claims made by journalists about the benefits system. In the past […]

  • Straight Talk on Economic Mobility

    Americans may be skeptical of some large welfare state programs, but a widely shared conviction is that children that are born to poor parents should have the chance to move upward. That’s why it was good to hear President Obama finally talking passionately about economic mobility in his Tuesday speech on income inequality in Osawatomie, […]

  • Two visual thoughts

    An interruption from my series of posts on the deservingness of benefit claimants, to share two charts that caught my eye over the past two weeks (and because of a time shortage this week…), looking at global inequality and unions in Britain.

  • Health Behaviors Do Not Explain the Growing Education-Mortality Gradient

    The gap in premature mortality between high and low educated people in the United States has grown considerably over the last few decades, even as life expectancy has increased overall. A common explanation is the changing distribution of risk factors: if the less educated are relatively slow to experience declines in mortality, it must be […]