Monthly Archives: April 2013

Social Factors and the Evaluation of Mental Disorders

The American Psychiatric Association is set to release the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) this month. These new guidelines will have a profound effect on how clinicians diagnose mental disorders, how health insurers … Continue reading

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Public Opinion Squared

When you see something created in front of your eyes, you have to think about what it is that you’ve just seen. Such was the case the other week when I was helping a BBC radio journalist on attitudes to … Continue reading

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Lying with statistics

In the midst of the argument we in the UK are currently having about welfare, it’s worth highlighting one factor that’s standing in the way of honest debate. This is politicians’ routine, wilful abuse of numbers. It’s an old complaint. … Continue reading

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Immigration reform without public benefits

Any viable immigration reform proposal in the United States senate has to pass through Florida Republican Marcio Rubio. That’s why it was big news when Rubio announced his support for a bipartisan plan on the Sunday news shows, stressing that … Continue reading

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Boston is Resilient

Bloodshed and mayhem on the streets of any city is tragic, but Boston is particularly disturbing to me. I spent many pleasant spring afternoons wandering the shops around Copley Square and, on one occasion, I cheered on runners at the … Continue reading

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Justifying ‘Never-Working Families’?

In a recent post, Lindsey Macmillan showed that “The ‘never working’ family may be an easier sound bite but it is not representative of the true situation”. Here she responds to yet another attempt to make these claims – except this … Continue reading

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Social Progress – A League Table

Strange though it is to say, but alternatives to GDP are becoming fashionable. This week saw the launch of a new measure of ‘social progress’ on which to rank countries – and perhaps surprisingly, Britain did really rather well, not … Continue reading

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Immigration and reciprocity

There’s been so many claims about benefits lately in the UK that it’s difficult to know where to start in responding to them. Rather than talk about Mick Philpott (about which enough has been said elsewhere) or the question of … Continue reading

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Ease off the alarm bells: New data on ADHD diagnosis rates

The New York Times has a cover story today reporting on the estimated prevalence of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder from the 2011-2012 National Survey of Children’s Health (they don’t identify the survey by name). The story is going to get a lot … Continue reading

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British and U.S. Inequality Over the Lifecourse: An Important New Report

Ben and I both attended the Social Change Harvard-Manchester Initiative (SCHMi) summer institute in 2010, a joint program between the University of Manchester and Harvard. A core group of SCHMi researchers just released a report, authored by Rourke O’Brien (also … Continue reading

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