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How do inequalities in childhood affect us now and in our later lives?

UI Researcher secures RSE funding to study social disparities in housing and residential mobility amongst children born in Scotland

Previous UI researcher, Dr Francesca Fiori, has been awarded a Research Re-Boot Grant from the Royal Society of Edinburgh. She will use the funding to re-start a UI research project on childhood inequalities that was halted as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Does comprehensive education reduce health inequalities?

Despite the growing life expectancy witnessed in the last decades, in many western countries, socio-economic inequalities in health persist. A voluminous body of work describing social and economic determinants of health inequalities exists, but much less is known about the impact of social policies, and specifically educational reforms, on health. In this paper, we examine whether the introduction of comprehensive secondary education in Britain has led to any change in health inequalities measured by a variety of both objective and subjective indicators. Equalizing educational opportunities is an argument for a comprehensive school system. Given that education is an important social determinant of health, it is hypothesised that a more equitable comprehensive system could reduce health inequalities in adulthood. To test this hypothesis, we exploited the change from a largely selective to a largely comprehensive system that occurred in the UK from the mid-1960s onwards and compare inequalities in health outcomes of two birth cohorts (1958 and 1970) who attended either system.