account arrow-down-linearrow-down-small arrow-downarrow-download arrow-left-small arrow-leftarrow-link arrow-rightarrow-upawarded books calendar close-modal closedate delete document education emailevent facebookhamburger impact instagramjustice linkedin location-outline location opinion page phonepinterestplay plusplyr-pause plyr-play post preview project publication reports search-bigsearch share star-full star-open startime twitterwelfare youtube zoom-in zoom-out

English Atlas of Inequality challenges assumptions of rich and poor areas

By Nuffield Foundation

A new English Atlas of Inequality which aims to challenge misconceptions about rich and poor areas has been published.

The English Atlas of Inequality, developed by Professor Alasdair Rae and Dr Elvis Nyanzu from the University of Sheffield’s Department of Urban Studies and Planning, maps 149 commuting zones – known as Travel To Work Areas (TTWAs) – across England, showing levels of inequality within the areas.

The research, funded by the Nuffield Foundation, used three separate measures of inequality and compared the results of each measure in the TTWAs to outcomes for the population in mortality, poverty and entry to higher education; to understand how alternative approaches to understanding inequality can produce very different results.

Researchers used the most commonly used inequality measure, the ‘Gini coefficient’, which looks at income distribution, alongside the ‘20:20 Index’, a measure of economic imbalance within areas and also ‘Moran’s I’ which measures geographic clustering of different income groups.

The results of their work highlight the risks of using one single measure to understand the issue of inequality in England. So to complete the Atlas, the researchers also measured inequality within all local authority districts and parliamentary constituencies.

Professor Rae, said: “Our atlas highlights the fact that no one measure of inequality paints the full picture and that methodological diversity is needed before we start to think of solutions to inequality at a local, sub-national and national level.

“There are some confounding features of inequality in that some of England’s most unequal places have some of the best outcomes on key measures such as mortality and entry to higher education. Yet the opposite is also often true.

“This is a reminder that a policy focus on inequality ought also to be linked to a focus on poverty alleviation and equality of opportunity, but also that how we understand inequality is inextricably linked to how we measure it in the first place.

“Our hope is that this atlas can make a small contribution to the debate and help shed light on a topic of critical importance.”

This English Atlas of Inequality advances our knowledge of how inequalities are distributed at the local level. The Atlas highlights the importance of taking a multi-faceted approach to the study of inequality and to policy making for a more inclusive society.” Alex Beer, Programme Head at the Nuffield Foundation

Related project


Explore our projects

Girl with mum reading School availability parental labour supply and family wellbeing
New

Welfare | 2020 - 2021

COVID-19 and school availability: impact on parental labour supply and well-being

View project
New

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

Pension saving over the lifecycle

View project
Older-man-reads-textbook-Assembling-data-jigsaw-Greater-Manchester-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2024

Assembling the data jigsaw: powering robust population research in MSK disease

View project
Medical-professional-massages-patient-knee-Understanding-joint-replacement-surgery-decision-making-for-older-patients-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2023

Supporting older patients to make informed decisions about knee surgery

View project
Woman-medical-professional-treats-patient-impact-MSK-conditions-outcomes-other-illnesses-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

The impact of musculoskeletal conditions on outcomes of other illnesses

View project
Female-nurse-sees-patient-in-office-Integrating-enriched-longitudinal-data-North-Staffordshire-Stoke-on-Trent-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2025

Enriched data integration for population musculoskeletal health intelligence

View project
Older-man-and-woman-walk-together-Geographical-mapping-prevalence-outcomes-MSK-conditions-Wales-Scotland-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

Mapping rheumatic and musculoskeletal disease in Scotland and Wales

View project
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

Older people in England: the geography of challenges and opportunities

View project
Senior-woman-enjoys-video-call-on-smartphone-Social-cohesion-in-context-of-COVID-19-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2021

Social cohesion in the context of COVID-19

View project
Toddler-gleefully-eats-baked-beans-How-COVID-19-is-affecting-food-security-proj
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2021

How the COVID-19 crisis is affecting food security

View project
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

Vulnerability, migration and well-being: experiences, perceptions and barriers

View project
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2021

COVID realities: families on low incomes during the pandemic

View project
New

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

Pension saving over the lifecycle

View project
Girl with mum reading School availability parental labour supply and family wellbeing
New

Welfare | 2020 - 2021

COVID-19 and school availability: impact on parental labour supply and well-being

View project
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

Vulnerability, migration and well-being: experiences, perceptions and barriers

View project
Toddler-gleefully-eats-baked-beans-How-COVID-19-is-affecting-food-security-proj
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2021

How the COVID-19 crisis is affecting food security

View project
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

Older people in England: the geography of challenges and opportunities

View project
Senior-woman-enjoys-video-call-on-smartphone-Social-cohesion-in-context-of-COVID-19-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2021

Social cohesion in the context of COVID-19

View project
Teenage-girl-looks-at-smartphone-next-to-laptop-Growing-up-under-COVID-19-PROJ
In progress

Education | Welfare | 2020 - 2021

Growing up under COVID-19

View project
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

COVID-19 social study

View project
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2021

COVID realities: families on low incomes during the pandemic

View project
Woman-looks-at-smartphone-screen-How-the-UK-public-gets-information-about-COVID-19-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2020

How the UK public gets information about COVID-19

View project
Woman-medical-professional-treats-patient-impact-MSK-conditions-outcomes-other-illnesses-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

The impact of musculoskeletal conditions on outcomes of other illnesses

View project
Man-massages-own-hand-Longitudinal-evidence-how-arthritis-affects-earnings-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

How arthritis affects earnings over time

View project
New

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

Pension saving over the lifecycle

View project
Girl with mum reading School availability parental labour supply and family wellbeing
New

Welfare | 2020 - 2021

COVID-19 and school availability: impact on parental labour supply and well-being

View project
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

Vulnerability, migration and well-being: experiences, perceptions and barriers

View project
Toddler-gleefully-eats-baked-beans-How-COVID-19-is-affecting-food-security-proj
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2021

How the COVID-19 crisis is affecting food security

View project
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

Older people in England: the geography of challenges and opportunities

View project
Senior-woman-enjoys-video-call-on-smartphone-Social-cohesion-in-context-of-COVID-19-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2021

Social cohesion in the context of COVID-19

View project
Teenage-girl-looks-at-smartphone-next-to-laptop-Growing-up-under-COVID-19-PROJ
In progress

Education | Welfare | 2020 - 2021

Growing up under COVID-19

View project
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

COVID-19 social study

View project
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2021

COVID realities: families on low incomes during the pandemic

View project
Woman-looks-at-smartphone-screen-How-the-UK-public-gets-information-about-COVID-19-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2020

How the UK public gets information about COVID-19

View project
Woman-medical-professional-treats-patient-impact-MSK-conditions-outcomes-other-illnesses-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

The impact of musculoskeletal conditions on outcomes of other illnesses

View project
Man-massages-own-hand-Longitudinal-evidence-how-arthritis-affects-earnings-PROJ
In progress

Welfare | 2020 - 2022

How arthritis affects earnings over time

View project
Reported

Welfare | 2013 - 2017

IFS Green Budget 2013 – 2016

View project
Reported

Welfare | 2013 - 2016

Data about fathers in birth cohort studies (Life Study)

View project
Reported

Welfare | 2017 - 2017

General Election 2017

View project
Reported

Justice | Welfare | 2015 - 2018

Bridging the Evidence Gap in Family Proceedings

View project
Reported

Welfare | 2018 - 2018

Interdisciplinary conference on evidence use in policy

View project
Reported

Welfare | 2019 - 2020

Valuing data: foundations for data policy

View project
Reported

Welfare | 2018 - 2019

Overview of the major ethical issues arising from data, algorithms and AI

View project
Reported

Welfare | 2015 - 2016

Our world in data

View project
Reported

Welfare | 2011 - 2013

Smoking: behavioural economics and public policy

View project
Reported

Welfare | 2014 - 2018

Antiretroviral adherence among HIV+ adolescents in Southern Africa

View project
Reported

Welfare | 2004 - 2007

The Governance of Parliament 2004 – 2007

View project
Reported

Education | Welfare | 2013 - 2019

Neglected tropical diseases

View project
Search projects

We improve people’s lives by funding research that informs social policy, primarily in Education, Welfare and Justice. We also fund student programmes that give young people skills and confidence in science and research.

We offer our grant-holders the freedom to frame questions and enable new thinking. Our research must stand up to rigorous academic scrutiny, but we understand that to be successful in effecting change, it also needs to be relevant to people’s experience.

Profile