The British Society for Population Studies holds an annual conference in a different venue each September. Programmes, abstracts, and reports of previous conferences can be accessed from the archive link at the bottom of the page.
Covid-19 & the 2020 BSPS Conference. BSPS hopes that the picture will be clearer by the time the call for papers closes on 20 April. Please submit continue to submit in the meantime. Updates will be posted here.
BSPS Conference 2020
University of Leicester 14-16 September 2020
CALL FOR PAPERS: DEADLINE MONDAY 20 APRIL 2020 (Midnight)
BSPS Call for papers 2020
The 2020 BSPS Conference will be held at the University of Leicester, Stamford Court, 14-16 September. All Conference sessions will be on site, where Conference catering & accommodation will also be available. Booking forms will be available from late May, together with a provisional timetable. It is anticipated there will be one plenary lecture plus a plenary panel.
There will be a full programme of simultaneous strand sessions of submitted papers: proposals and abstracts for papers & posters are invited across the entire demographic & population studies spectrum. Whilst any approach is welcome, a submission should have a demographic or population studies focus. Empirical submissions for oral presentations should include some results, these may well be preliminary at the time of submission.
Viability of stand-alone strands & sessions will depend on sufficient submissions being received.
Information updates on the Conference will be posted to this website as available.
Please submit online by midnight on Monday 20 April. A short abstract of up to 250 words is requested. Empirical submissions should cover research question, methods, data, results or preliminary results, & potential applications. Extended abstracts are optional & must be sent separately; these can help in the final selection of papers. Up to 4 double-spaced A4 sheets in PDF format only may be emailed to email@example.com with ‘BSPS extended abstract’ and the intended strand or session in the title line. Extended abstracts are not a substitute for formal online submissions: this process should still be completed. Organisers may request further details of a submission before final decisions are made. Short abstracts will appear on the Conference website. Extended abstracts are for information purposes only.
Choose an appropriate strand or session and submit online at:
If you are unable to submit online, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for alternative arrangements.
Oral & poster submissions are given equal weight. Final decisions on papers & posters accepted for presentation will be emailed to submitting authors by late May.
In addition to the strands and sessions inviting submissions, there will also be a couple of closed sessions, for which submissions are not being sought, plus training sessions: these will be advised in the preliminary programme, available in late May. Offers of additional training sessions may still be put forward.
Before submitting, please read the Notes at the end of this call for papers carefully. There is some duplication in topics between strands & sessions. Please submit to the strand or session you think most appropriate.
Strands & sessions with organisers (who may be contacted with queries):
Ageing in Place:
This strand welcomes submissions of papers relating to different aspects of Ageing in Place. We welcome papers considering relevant topics including, but not limited to: population ageing, consequences, and public policies; the ageing community; Age Friendly Cities; living arrangement and living design; ageing and health; long-term care; integrated care; intergenerational support; loneliness and social isolation and Healthy Ageing. We welcome innovative papers, whether using quantitative, qualitative or mixed methods.
Strand Organisers: Dr. Yazhen Yang, Dr. Maja Palmer (University of Southampton) – email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
Critical perspectives in demography & population studies:
This strand welcomes papers discussing the application or use of critical theories (e.g. but not limited to -intersectionality, feminist theories, post/de-coloniality, and critical race theories) and interdisciplinary perspectives in demography and population studies. Papers may explore methodological and analytical implications, and offer new applications, interpretations or contributions to initiate or generate further critical reflections in the field.
Strand Organiser: Dr Rishita Nandagiri (LSE) –email@example.com
This strand welcomes papers relating to the quality of data inputs and/or outputs and which explore how assurance can be provided of their fitness for purpose: from paradata and metadata to measures of uncertainty.
Strand Organiser: Phil Humby (Office for National Statistics) – firstname.lastname@example.org
Data science: Innovative data, methods and models:
The combination of new sources of data and the increased availability of cheap computing power have opened up exciting new avenues for research in population science. Methodological advances and new statistical modelling approaches allow these new resources to be exploited to create new scientific knowledge and forecast our demographic futures. This strand welcomes papers that demonstrate the application of innovative methods and models to problems in the population sciences.
In particular, demographic applications falling under the following headings are encouraged:
- big data;
- innovative statistical modelling and forecasting;
- Bayesian methods and uncertainty quantification;
- machine learning;
- ethical issues in data science research
Themed sessions are also inviting papers, as described below
Strand Organiser:Dr. Jason Hilton (University of Southampton) - J.D.Hilton@soton.ac.uk
Digital and computational demography:
Demographic research relying on digital data and using computationally-intensive methods is advancing fast. This session provides a platform for researchers to present new ways of making sense of our social world with the help of these innovative approaches. We welcome substantive and methodological papers addressing the main challenges in the field.
Organiser: Diego Alburez-Gutierrez (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research) - email@example.com
Understanding statistical uncertainty and error: applying new methods to blended population and migration estimates:
Papers which showcase the error framework developed at the Office for National Statistics to support transformation of the population statistics system. It will also describe innovative methods developed to understand statistical uncertainty around integrated population estimates, for which papers from outside ONS would also be welcomed.
Organiser: Dr. Louisa Blackwell (office for National Statistics) – firstname.lastname@example.org
Demographic impact of climate change:
Climate change already has and threatens to continue to have a major impact on societies and economies. Demography will not be immune and we could see significant changes in mortality, health and migration patterns. This session is therefore looking for papers which cover the impact of existing levels of climate change as well as papers which look at the potential future demographic impact of climate change.
Organiser: Dr. Dermot Grenham – email@example.com
Demography, inequality & social policy:
This strand welcomes submissions relating to inequality, poverty, deprivation, how this is changing and the impact that this has on individuals (including health and opportunities), areas and households. Analysis of differences due to the measure of inequality applied and new methods are also welcome.
A related theme is also inviting submissions as shown below.
Strand Organiser: Phil Humby (ONS) – firstname.lastname@example.org
Unintended consequences of social policy:
This session welcomes papers that examine the unintended consequences of social policy on inequalities and demographic outcomes. Unintended consequences include (1) overshooting original goals, (2) impact of conflicting policies that cancel each other out, or (3) any other negative or positive outcomes that may not have been originally anticipated. Examples of topics include national or cross-national research into policy effects on gender, class, ethnic, or other group inequalities.
Organiser: Dr. Kathrin Morosow (University of Bath) – email@example.com
Families & households strand:
This year the families and households strand will include a themed session or sessions on Families and Work, and a themed sub-strand on East Asian Families, as outlined below. As in previous years, we also welcome papers for the general sessions which in one way or another investigate the diversity of family or household compositions and outcomes in any region.
Examples of relevant topics include, but are not limited to: trends, determinants and/or effects of union formation and dissolution; the timing of demographic events; care and unpaid work in the home; intergenerational and/or kin relationships; and other family processes and outcomes, as well as how these patterns differ by gender, income, race/ethnicity, age/cohorts and/or region.
Strand Organisers: Dr. Jenny Chanfreau (UCL); Dr. Afshin Zilanawala (UCL) – firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
Families and work:
This session invites papers investigating the lives of working families with a focus on child and adult outcomes arising from parents’ work characteristics. Research may investigate the role of gender, family structure, income, and race/ethnicity and their interactions with work patterns, family leave, and/or work/family balance.
Organiser: Dr. Afshin Zilanawala (UCL) – firstname.lastname@example.org
East Asian families:
Sexual activities in marital relationships in East Asia:
Sexual behaviour is relatively under-studied in fertility and family research. We call for papers which address the role of sexual behaviour in marital relationships, and in particular, how sexual activities and attitudes are associated with gender relations, household division of labour, fertility, marital satisfaction and well-being of the family.
Organisers: Dr.Man-yee Kan and Dr. Muzhi Zhou (University of Oxford) -
Family and wellbeing in East Asia:
The session focuses on the effects of different aspects of family life, such as domestic division of labour within couples, parental education, wealth, and time availability on the well-being of family members. Well-being will be understood broadly and will include discretionary time and marital satisfaction. Potential papers may explore the effects of gender inequality and intergenerational coresidence on leisure, sleep and marital satisfaction.
Organisers: Dr. Kamila Kolpashnikova and Dr. Ekaterina Hertog (University of Oxford) - email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
Fertility & reproductive health:
This strand welcomes papers covering any aspect of fertility and reproductive health in high, middle or low income countries. Papers can examine any substantive topic and/or methodological aspect related to fertility or reproductive health. We particularly encourage papers which are policy relevant, incorporate cross‐national comparisons, or use innovative methodological and theoretical approaches. Reproductive health may include issues, such as pregnancy loss, sexual and reproductive health and rights, contraceptive use or assisted reproductive technology.
A themed session or sessions is also inviting papers, as described below.
Strand Organiser: Dr.Heini Väisänen (University of Southampton) – email@example.com
Later fertility in low fertility countries:
In Europe, age at family formation is increasing, particularly among highly educated women. In this session, we will gather papers that study the demographic and epidemiological consequences of the shift to later fertility. We are particularly interested in studies of both men and women, or by level of education, in a comparative or country perspective.
Organiser: Dr. Eva Beaujouan (Wittgenstein Centre for Demography & Global Human Capital) – firstname.lastname@example.org
Health & mortality:
Submissions are invited that are related to all aspects of health and mortality. This year we would like to encourage the submission of studies which look at intersectionalities and studies that look at morbidities and causes of death. Areas of interest include life course influences on health and mortality, the study of health behaviours, determinants of poor health and trends in mortality over time and within groups. We welcome any methodological approach primarily if innovative, but we are also keen to receive papers that use mixed methods approaches.
See below for a themed session or sessions.
Strand Organiser: Dr.Tiziana Leone (London School of Economics) – T.Leone@lse.ac.uk
Life course neighbourhood effects:
There have been calls to improve the evidence base to test the thesis that an accumulation of exposure to neighbourhood deprivation is damaging to health and wellbeing. This session invites papers that use longitudinal data showing how where you live across the life course impacts on later life health.
Organiser: Dr. Stephen Jivraj (UCL) –email@example.com
This strand welcomes submissions addressing any aspect of historical demography, or the history of demography as an academic discipline. Papers may focus on any of a broad range of themes, such as fertility, mortality, migration, household formation, social mobility, urbanization, public health, social inequality or other related fields in the context of historical populations. Contributions may focus on any part of the world, and at any scale, from local studies to international comparisons.
Strand Organisers: Dr.Hanna Jaadla & Dr. Alice Reid (University of Cambridge) – firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
Internal & international migration:
We invite papers in the following research areas:
1. The analysis of the patterns, processes and impacts of international and intra-national migration. The results of empirical analysis are especially welcome, but topics may also include discussions of conceptual challenges, migration terminologies, data sources and methodological issues.
2. The study of fertility, family, health, and mortality of migrants and their descendants.
3. The analysis of spatial aspects of population processes, for example, studies analysing spatial patterns of population or investigating contextual effects on demographic processes.
Three themed sessions are also inviting submissions: see below.
Strand Organisers: Dr. Júlia Mikolai (University of St Andrews), Dr. Michael J. Thomas (Statistics Norway) – firstname.lastname@example.org; Michael.Thomas@ssb.no
Children of immigrants:
This session welcomes papers on the socio-demographic lives of the children of immigrants (generation 1.5 or the second generation).
Organisers: Dr. Matthew Wallace, Dr. Ben Wilson (University of Stockholm) – email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
Immigrant integration across industrialised countries:
We invite papers for this session that cover different aspects of immigrant integration including but not restricted to partnership and family behaviours, employment, education, and housing experiences of immigrants across industrialised countries.
Organisers: Professor Hill Kulu, Dr. Júlia Mikolai (University of St. Andrews) – email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
Spatial mobility & immobility: what does moving or not moving mean for social & political attitudes:
Recent evidence from the UK, Iceland, Finland, and the USA suggests that people who have changed address and been residentially mobile are more likely to be trusting and open towards outsiders. Conversely those who have been immobile tend to have greater distrust of out-groups such as immigrants and to have a greater propensity towards right-wing populist voting. This is significant in light of the long-term decrease in residential mobility noted in many countries. This session seeks to bring other national evidence to bear on this topic and to assess the importance of other types of spatial mobility, over and above address changes, in transforming social and political attitudes.
This session will initially bring together researchers from Iceland, England, Sweden, Finland and Ireland who are working in this general area but it will also be open to others who want to present their work in this area – indeed, other presentation/paper offers are very much encouraged.
Organiser: Dr. Ian Shuttleworth (Queen’s University Belfast) – email@example.com
Regional, subnational and local demography: its impact on policy-making for places:
We are interested in presentations that explore the relationship between regional, subnational and local demography and subnational policymaking - be that through local authorities, local enterprise partnerships, combined authorities or the devolved administrations. Presentations should be principally aimed at a demographically-informed but policy-facing audience. As well as evidence from the UK, we welcome presentations that reflect upon how population geography impacts local policy in other countries.
Topics might include:
- Demography, poverty and austerity. UK local government budgets are decreasing and becoming decoupled from measures of service demand derived from population estimates. Over the same period, families with children have largely borne the brunt of austerity, whilst the risk of poverty has declined amongst older people. How do local demographic trends and variations influence levels of poverty and deprivation, and the provision of local services including social care, youth services and community safety?
- Bridging the gap in evidence. How suitable are official population estimates and projections for policy design and service delivery? Do household projections sufficiently reflect trends in housing tenure and household formation, and how well do they serve planning policy? What alternatives are available, and what novel methods have been used to supplement official statistics?
- Shifting patterns of internal migration. The UK's large cities have experienced a historical repopulation, attracting large numbers of young professionals, whilst small towns and coastal areas experience relative population and economic decline. How have local areas sought to cope with these patterns of internal migration, and what information are local policymakers using to plan for the future?
- Strand organisers: Ben Corr (Greater London Authority), Dr. Mark Fransham (LSE) – firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
Telling the story in statistics:
This strand invites presentations on how you have brought your data to life, made your data discoverable, and/or communicated your results to non-specialists. These could include examples of open data platforms or ways you have found to make your messages more accessible to a wider audience.
Organiser: Dr.Esther Roughsedge (National Records of Scotland) - firstname.lastname@example.org
UK Data Service presents data impact stories
In this showcase session, examples are invited of excellent research using key datasets from the UK Data Service. The datasets will be introduced and researchers will present findings from research that has been proven to deliver impact: in policy change, in advancement of knowledge on a specialist topic, or creating greater awareness of a social issue.
Organiser: Neil Dymond-Green (UK Data Service, Jisc) email@example.com
Posters: Poster submissions are invited across the spectrum of population studies & methodological approaches to demography. Researchers are encouraged to present results from completed papers and also from research in progress. Papers without final results are particularly well-suited to poster presentation. Presenters are welcome to submit more than one abstract for consideration as a poster, possibly in addition to a paper submission.
Organisers: to be confirmed
General & administrative queries: BSPS Secretariat – firstname.lastname@example.org
Submissions should be made online at:
Confirmation is required on the submissions form that presenters will attend the conference at their own expense. Attendance at the BSPS conference cannot be subsidised by BSPS – this applies to BSPS members and non-members and there are NO exceptions. (Except for existing BSPS student and local government members fulfilling specific conditions. See under bursaries.)
- Papers may be allocated to a different strand from that to which the submission was made.
- A maximum of TWO submissions as first author and/or presenter for oral presentations, although additional poster submissions would be most welcome.
- Submissions from non-members are welcomed.
- Short abstracts may be changed up to the end of July.
- Registration for the conference by the presenting author will be required before the paper or poster is included in the final programme.
- Papers are organised into strand sessions. Each presenter will have 20-30 minutes in total, with 15-20 minutes for presentation & 5-10 minutes for questions & discussion. Strand organisers will advise if a different format for the session in question is planned.
- Poster competition: a prize fund of £100 in book tokens is offered for the poster(s) judged the best on display. At least 50% of this prize will be awarded to the best student poster. All accepted posters are automatically entered for the poster prize. The invited judges will be announced later.
- BSPS student member bursaries & BSPS local government employee member bursaries – please note that there are NO exceptions to the following conditions:
- Bursaries are available ONLY to BSPS student members and BSPS local government employee members whose employer will not cover their costs.
- Bursaries are only available if presenting a paper or poster.
- BSPS 2020 membership dues must have been paid BEFORE submission. Memberships activated or reactivated after submission are NOT eligible for a bursary.
- As the number of bursaries may be limited, application for a bursary does not guarantee that one will be awarded. Applications must be received by the submission deadline..
- Bursaries usually cover the costs of on-site accommodation, meals during the conference, plus registration. Travel is not included.
- Application for a bursary is via the online submissions form ONLY, which MUST have the bursary application box checked.
- Recipients of bursaries may be asked to contribute to Conference preparation, provide reports of sessions, or assist on-site.
Submit online at:
BSPS CONFERENCE 2019 - University Hall, Cardiff University 9-11 September 2019
The 2019 BSPS Conference was held at University Hall, Cardiff University, 9-11 September.
The plenary theme of the Conference was ‘An ageing population: opportunities and challenges’.
Plenary speakers were Professor Carol Jagger (Newcastle University, Institute of Ageing), who spoke on The health and care needs of future older populations: opportunity or challenge?
& Dr. Brian Beach (International Longevity Centre, UK) who spoke on Longevity in research and policy: What happens next?
Slides from both plenary presentations are available here.
The health and care needs.of future older populations
Longevity in research & policy
Abstracts are presented by session within strands, in the order in which papers are to be presented.
Ageing across the globe abstracts
Data quality abstracts
Developments in official population statistics abstracts
Families and households abstracts
Feminist approaches abstracts
Health and mortality abstracts
Innovative data abstracts
Local demography abstracts
Migration mobilities abstracts
Telling the story in statistics
Workshops and training sessions 2019
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