In this month's issue: 

News from Nuffield-funded projects

A study by seven British universities has revealed significant inequalities in child welfare across the UK, with children in the poorest areas at least 10 times more likely than those in the most affluent to become involved in the child protection system.

Spending per pupil in schools is set to be at least 70% higher in 2020 than it was in 1990, but the equivalent figure for sixth forms and FE is set to be no higher at all than it was in 1990.

The Nuffield Council on Bioethics calls for better information and support on the use of non-invasive prenatal testing (NIPT),
a moratorium on the use of NIPT in sequencing the whole genome of fetuses, and a ban on its use in finding out the sex of the fetus.

Attending a nursery with highly qualified staff or an outstanding Ofsted rating has a limited benefit for children’s educational achievement.

Older teenagers and young adults are able to improve their fundamental maths skills and reasoning abilities more rapidly than younger teens.

80 per cent of 17-year-olds disagree with the idea of making maths compulsory post-16 even though there is evidence that those with A level Maths earn more later in life. 

Funded by the Foundation for the fifth year running, the IFS Green Budget presents analysis of the issues and challenges facing Chancellor Philip Hammond as he prepares for his first Budget. Key findings include:
Catch up on presentations and discussions from our seminar to launch Family Background and University Success, a new book that draws on Nuffield-funded research to examine socio-economic gaps in higher education access and outcomes and what drives them. Speakers include Anna Vignoles, Lorraine Dearden, Claire Crawford and John Micklewright. 

Do you teach students aged 14 and up? Can you help us spread the word about Q-Step Social Science Degrees? 

Q-Step degrees are offered in social science subjects ranging from area studies to political science to sociology in ‘Q-Step Centres’ at 18 of the UK’s top universities. All of them place emphasis on developing quantitative skills and enabling students to analyse complex data – skills that are invaluable in today’s job market. We have published a Q-Step prospectus to make it easier for students, parents, and teachers to access information about all available Q-Step courses in one place.

Please share the prospectus with your students and colleagues so that more young people can benefit from this opportunity.
Download Q-Step undergraduate prospectus
Nuffield students reach final of Big Bang Competition

Over 40 of our Nuffield Research Placement students have won places in the finals of this year's Big Bang Competition which will take place in Birmingham from 15-18 March. See a full list of student finalists on our website and hear from last year's winner, Nuffield student, Roxanne El-Hady in this video. 
Winner of the UK Young Scientist of the Year 2016 - Roxanne El-Hady

New research and innovation projects funded

Children and Families

  • Matt Barnard from NatCen Social Research is producing a comprehensive outcomes framework for monitoring children’s social care services. Read more

Early Years Education and Childcare

  • Professor Lynne Murray from the University of Reading is evaluating a programme designed to train parents in good book-sharing practices. Read more
  • Dr Deborah Gibbard from Solent NHS Trust is leading a randomised controlled trial to evaluate an enhanced parent-based model of speech and language therapy. Read more
Economic Advantage and Disadvantage
  • Dr Daniel Richardson from University College London is developing a mass participation experiment into the psychological roots of societal self-harm. Read more
  • Dr Demi Patsios from the University of Bristol is leading an analysis of the recession using multidimensional indicators of living standards. Read more


  • Jude Hillary from the National Foundation for Educational Research is leading a project to understand the factors associated with teacher retention, turnover and return to teaching. Read more
Law in Society
  • Daniel Monk from Birkbeck College is undertaking a study of contact between siblings in public law proceedings, an issue that affects increasing numbers of vulnerable children. Read more
  • Ben Estep from the Centre for Justice Innovation is leading a project to develop and support the delivery of local models of problem-solving practices in youth courts. Read more
Open Door
  • Professor Christopher Hood from the University of Oxford is leading a study to describe and assess the operation of public expenditure control in the UK between 1993 and 2015. Read more
  • Dr Carlos Vargas-Silva from the University of Oxford is undertaking analysis of the labour market, wellbeing and education outcomes of refugees in the UK. Read more
  • Dr Francesco Fasani from Queen Mary University of London is leading a project to investigate three aspects of the interplay between asylum policies and refugees’ outcomes. Read more
  • Professor Wendy Carlin from University College London is developing a new open-access course to introduce social science students to economic methods. Read more
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