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Department of Social Policy

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Department of Social Policy
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London School of Economics and Political Science
Houghton Street
London WC2A 2AE


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The Department of Social Policy is the longest established in the UK.
The Department prides itself in being able to offer teaching based on the highest quality empirical research in the field. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, the UK's nationwide assessment of research quality, impact and environment, which is undertaken every six to seven years, the Department was ranked first in the UK for world leading and internationally excellent research and was also awarded the joint highest marks for the non-academic impacts of its work. When adjusted to take account of the high proportion of staff submitted to REF, it is the number one UK Social Policy Department for overall research quality.
JL Fernandez

Research Funding News

Dr Jose Luis Fernandez from PSSRU, has been awarded funding by the European Commission to establish a network on  quality and cost-effectiveness in long-term care (LTC) and dependency prevention. The network will support long-term care policy makers across the EU to close the increasing gap between demand and provision of LTC services by identifying evidence about key strategies for reducing care needs and improving the cost-effectiveness of the care system. The network includes the Universitat de Barcelona, the European Centre for Social Welfare Policy and Research, and the National Institute for Health and Welfare.


Measles and migrants

In the past two years, Europe has recorded more than 22,000 cases of measles: a sharp reversal of the 96% decline of the last 20 years. Why is it happening and who is at risk? New LSE research led by Gemma Williams from LSE Health sheds some light on the issue.


First born children of women in their thirties perform best in tests of mental development and psychological well-being

The firstborn children of mothers in their thirties score more highly on measures of mental development and psychological well-being than children born to other first time mothers reveals new research by Dr Alice Goisis, a researcher in Demography at LSE.

According to the research, which has been published in the December issue of the journal Biodemography and Social Biology, mothers who give birth to their first child in their thirties tend to have characteristics which help make their children perform better when measured on these outcomes at age five.

LSE Literary Festival 2016

LSE Literary Festival Discussion
The Allure of Happy Endings

Date: Monday 22nd February 2016
Time: 19.00-20.30
Venue: Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building

Speakers: Dr Molly Crockett, Professor Paul Dolan, Sinéad Moriarty
Chair: Jonathan Gibbs

Why do we like the escapism of “happily ever after”? Can a sad ending ever be enjoyed in the same way? And how can works of fiction have such a powerful hold on our emotions?

Suggested hashtag for this event for Twitter users: #LSELitFest

All events in the Festival are free to attend and open to all. E-tickets are available to book online via LSE online store.

LSE Literary Festival 2016

PSSRU LSE Literary Festival discussion
Art and Wellbeing: the growing impact of arts on health

Date: Tuesday 23rd February 2016
Time: 17.15-18.45
Venue: Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building

Speakers: Vivienne Parry, David McDaid, Liz Brady, James Leadbitter (the vacuum cleaner)
Chair: Professor Martin Knapp

This event will explore our current understanding on how engagement with the arts can increase wellbeing, with individual talks from those involved in science, art and health research and open discussion. 

Suggested hashtag for this event for Twitter users: #LSELitFest

All events in the Festival are free to attend and open to all. E-tickets are available to book online via LSE online store.

Further events are listed in the Department diary.

Past events are listed in News and Events archive.

Recent Podcasts

Goup Of Reporters

Department of Social Policy, Mannheim Centre for Criminology and the Howard League public discussion
New Media, Old News: strategies for penal reform groups to manage the new media landscape

Recorded on 20 January 2016

Speakers: Dr Marianne Colbran, Niall Couper, Andrew Neilson, Danny Shaw, Alan White
Chair: Professor Ian Loader

Anthropology and Development: challenges for the 21st century

Department of Social Policy and Department of Anthropology public discussion
Anthropology and Development: challenges for the 21st century

Recorded on 28 October 2015

Speakers: Professor James Fairhead, Professor Katy Gardner, Professor David Lewis, Professor David Mosse
Chair: Professor Deborah James

Too Many Children Left Behind

CASE and International Inequalities Institute Public Lecture
Too Many Children Left Behind: the US achievement gap in comparative perspective

Recorded on 21 October 2015

Speakers: Professor Jane Waldfogel, Dr Lee Elliott Major 
Chair:  Professor Sir John Hills

More podcasts available at Events podcasts

Recent Videos

This information is generated by an RSS feed from the Department audio and video channel, and shows the 4 most recent videos produced by the LSE.
More videos available on the Social Policy Video Channel
More videos available on the CASE Video Channel
More videos available on the LSE Health and Social Care Video Channel

Other videos


Gearty Grilling: John Hills on the Cost of Inequality

Released on:
28 May 2015
Contributor(s): Professor Sir John Hills

John Hills, Professor of Social Policy, discusses the need to reduce inequality in Britain.




Latest Publications

This information is generated by an RSS feed from LSE Research Online, and shows the 20 most recent publications (either published, or accepted for publication).

Featured Publications

Intergenerational consequences of migration-

Palgrave Macmillan (November 2015)

Migration is a life-changing experience not only for the migrants themselves but also for those left behind. Professor Lucinda Platt from the Department of Social Policy is one of the co-authors of a new book exploring the impact of migration across multiple aspects of migrants' lives by comparing three generations of Turkish migrants to Europe to their non-migrant counterparts in Turkey. The book is based on data that the team (which included Professor Platt as well as collaborators from Universities of Essex, Chemnitz and Amsterdam) collected in Turkey and Europe between 2010-12 on 2000 Turkish families and their 50,000 family members. The book brings a novel theoretical approach to the analysis of migration; and the chapters cover topics such as patterns of migration, educational attainment across the generations, friendships, marriages, religiosity and fertility.

Health Economics, Policy and Law Journal

Health Economics, Policy and Law

Editors: Dr Adam Oliver, Professor Elias Mossialos

The latest issue Health Economics, Policy and Law (HEPL) is now online. HEPL serves as a forum for scholarship on health policy issues from these perspectives, and is of use to academics, policy makers and health care managers and professionals. HEPL is international in scope, publishes both theoretical and applied work, and contains articles on all aspects of health policy. Considerable emphasis is placed on rigorous conceptual development and analysis, and on the presentation of empirical evidence that is relevant to the policy process.

Neoliberalising Old Age

Neoliberalising Old Age

Cambridge University Press (October 2015)

Governments are encouraging later-life working and state pension ages are being raised. There is also a growing debate on intergenerational equity and on ageism/age discrimination. John Macnicol, visiting Professor in the Department of Social Policy and one of Europe's leading academic analysts of old age and ageing, examines the effect of neoliberalism on the recent ageing and social policy agenda in the UK and the USA. He argues that the demographic and economic impulses behind recent policy changes are in fact less important than the effect of neoliberalism as an ideology, which has caused certain key problems to be defined in a particular way. The book outlines past theories of old age and examines pensions reform, the debate on life expectancy gains, the causes of retirement, the idea of intergenerational equity, the current debate on ageism/age discrimination and the likely human consequences of raising state pension ages.


Podcasts and videos