Professor John Hills

Professor John Hills

Richard Titmuss Professor of Social Policy

Department of Social Policy

+44 (0)20 7955 7419
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Key Expertise
UK social policies, social security, income and wealth inequality, housing

About me

Professor Sir John Hills is Richard Titmuss Professor of Social Policy at the London School of Economics and is currently Chair of CASE. He was co-director of the LSE’s interdisciplinary International Inequalities Institute from 2015-2018 and was director of the Centre for the Analysis of Social Exclusion (CASE) from 1997 to 2016. He enjoys teaching at Undergraduate and Postgraduate level on a variety of courses, from SP111 to PhD supervision.

John has worked at the LSE since 1986, having previously held posts at the House of Commons, the Institute for Fiscal Studies, and in Zimbabwe. He was a member of the UK Pensions Commission and chaired the National Equality Panel, as well as carrying out reviews for government of social housing policies and fuel poverty. John was recently a Commissioner for the Resolution Foundation’s independent Intergenerational Commission, is a Fellow of the British Academy and Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences. He was awarded a KBE in 2013 for services to social policy and an honorary DLitt from the University of Birmingham in 2016. He studied at the University of Cambridge for his undergraduate degree, and at the University of Birmingham for his master's degree.

John’s research focuses on inequality, the welfare state, and the role of social policy over the life course.  His interests also include public attitudes to the welfare state; social security; pensions policy; income and wealth distribution and fuel poverty. He was recently part of the project on Improving the Evidence Base for Understanding the Links between Inequalities and Poverty. This programme was led by CASE in partnership with the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and the International Inequalities Institute. Read more. He is currently part of the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion research programme on ‘Social Policies and Distributional Outcomes in a Changing Britain’, looking at social security policy since 2010 in particular. This programme is supported by the Nuffield Foundation and is led by CASE with partners from the University of Manchester and Heriot-Watt University. Read more.

As part of an ESRC Professorial Fellowship John co-edited and contributed to Wealth in the UK:Distribution, accumulation and policy (Oxford, 2013). His research on social policy over the life course was published in Good Times, Bad Times: The welfare myth of them and us (Policy Press, 2015) with a second edition released in Spring 2017. His most recent collaboration, co-edited with colleagues from CASE, is Social Policy in a Cold Climate: Policies and their consequences since the crisis (Policy Press, 2016). He has co-edited a book, with colleagues from Antwerp University, resulting from the long-running EU-funded “ImPRovE” (Poverty Reduction in Europe) programme, published in 2018. He has contributed articles to Social Policy and Administration, Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Journal of Poverty and Social Justice, Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, Fiscal Studies and the Journal of Social Policy.

John supervises doctoral studies in areas including:
Poverty, inequality and social exclusion, social security, pensions, housing subsidies and support, and welfare reform.

Expertise Details

Welfare state and public attitudes; social security; pensions policy; income and wealth distribution; social policy and the life cycle; fuel poverty

My research