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Defining the Household: Implications of Household Definitions in Surveys and Censuses - 15 May 2008

Presentations from this meeting can now be accessed from the hyperlink in the title line. Copyright in all papers and presentations resides with the authors, to whom requests to reprint should be made.

Thursday 15 May 2008

Darryl Forde Seminar Room, Department of Anthropology, University College London,
14 Taviton Street, London WC1H 0BW.

The practicalities of data collection and the need for meaningful data analysis and policy formulation require a social unit to be defined. In practical terms, this basic social unit is generally referred to as a household. The 'household' is almost universally used as a unit of enumeration, although evidence from diverse disciplines has noted that the household as defined by survey practitioners frequently bears little resemblance to the social units that people live in. This British Society for Population Studies day meeting draws upon the experience of a range of researchers to examine how households are defined and used in research. The aim is to create an agenda for questions and discussion involving all the participants and the audience.


10.30    Registration, tea & coffee.
11.00    Welcome and Introduction.
11.10-13.00    Session one - Chair: Sara Randall 

Ernestina Coast (LSE) - The commodity chain of the household: from policy to practice
Tanja Houweling (University College London) - 'Household' in the Demographic and Health Surveys: experiences from research on health inequity'
Marc Pilon (IRD, Paris) - Reflections on household concepts from a demographic point of view

13.00 - 14.00 - Sandwich lunch provided.

14.00-15.00    Session 2 - Chair: Tiziana Leone

Richard Wall (University of Essex) - Limitations on the role of households as economic units in Britain 1600-1960.
Ian Timaeus (London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine) - Is home where your heart or hearth is? A Southern African perspective.

15.30-15.45 - Tea Break.

15.45-17.15    Session 3 - Chair: Ernestina Coast

 Liz Oughton (Newcastle University) - Conceptualising the household in consumption studies: Fieldwork lessons from India, Jordan, and the UK.
Janet Seeley (University of East Anglia) - Lessons on defining the household from a study of socio-economic status and HIV and AIDS in rural Uganda.

17.15-17.30 - Concluding discussion.