Dr Kitty Stewart

Dr Kitty Stewart

Associate Professor

Department of Social Policy

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Key Expertise
Poverty, Social security, Early childhood policy, Inequality,

About me

Kitty Stewart is Associate Professor of Social Policy and Associate Director of the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion (CASE). Kitty joined LSE in 2001 as a STICERD post-doctoral fellow, having previously worked at the UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre in Florence. She has a PhD in Economics from the European University Institute in Florence.

Kitty’s recent research focuses primarily on the causes and consequences of child poverty, the relationship between income and wider outcomes, and policy for young children. She is currently Co-Investigator on a Nuffield-funded project which is using both large scale datasets and in-depth interviews to examine the impact of recent UK welfare reforms on larger families. Other on-going work includes an exploration of whether changes in early years policy in England have affected equality of access to nursery education, building on a previous Nuffield-funded project, and an analysis of the Labour Government's short-lived universal Health in Pregnancy Grant (2009-11). Kitty is a core member of the CASE team which has tracked the UK government’s record on social policy, poverty and inequality over the last two decades.

Past projects include:

  • A review of the implications for social policy of the UK leaving the European Union,
  • A systematic review of the causal relationship between household income and children’s outcomes, funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation;
  • An examination of stakeholder support for official changes to child poverty measurement in the UK.
  • Analysis of the labour market trajectories of mothers in low-skilled work. 

In the more distant past, Kitty examined the implications of fiscal decentralisation for regional inequalities in education funding in the Russian Federation in the immediate post-Soviet era. Her very first piece of empirical research was one of the earliest papers exploring the rise in male mortality in Russia in the early 1990s.

Kitty has published in a range of academic journals including the Journal of Social Policy, Journal of European Social Policy, Social Policy and Administration, British Educational Research Journal, Social Indicators Research and the Economic Journal. Recent edited books include An Equal Start? Providing Quality Early Education and Care for Disadvantaged Children coedited with Ludovica Gambaro and Jane Waldfogel (Policy Press 2015); and Social Policy in a Cold Climate: Policies and Their Consequences Since the Crisis, co-edited with Ruth Lupton, Tania Burchardt, John Hills and Polly Vizard (Policy Press 2016). She has also written several more policy-focused papers, such as Closing Gaps Early: The role of early years policy in promoting social mobility in England (with Jane Waldfogel, Resolution Foundation, 2017).

Kitty is the convenor for two taught courses: the core first year undergraduate course Foundations of Social Policy Research (SP101) and a half-unit MSc option on Social Security Policies. 

Kitty is a member of the Editorial Board for the Journal of Social Policy. She sits on the Child Poverty Action Group’s Policy Committee and is a Trustee of the Education Policy Institute.

Expertise Details

Poverty; Social security; Early childhood policy; Inequality; Quantitative methods