All features (social diversity)

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Same-sex couple

Same-sex partnerships: commitment above rights

The House of Lords has voted in favour of legalising same-sex marriage. ESRC-funded research suggests that couples enter into civil partnership to express commitment to their relationship, rather than legal 'rights' and protections.


Female surgeons: cutting the gender gap

Despite more women than men studying at UK medical schools, women are far less likely than male colleagues to pursue a career in surgery. ESRC-funded researchers have partnered with RCS and surgical society Scalpel to encourage women to become surgeons.

Muslim woman

Muslim communities successfully integrating

Muslim ethnic minority communities have been integrating into British and German cities for some time, according to research presented at the NORFACE Migration Conference at University College London this week.

Scotland puzzle

Scottish attitudes to 'devo max'

A report from ScotCen Social Research and the Electoral Reform Society used data from the ESRC-supported Scottish Social Attitudes Survey to find out ordinary citizens' attitudes to further devolution.

Crowd in street

The demographic push to democracy

When life spans increase, people become more concerned with their rights, pushing societies towards democracy, argues Tim Dyson of the London School of Economics. While this demographic transition has taken 200 years in Europe, China might be through this change by 2030.

David Bell

Scotland's welfare challenge

Whether independent or devolved from the UK, Scotland is set to gain more control over welfare spending – but politicians have not engaged with the challenging issues of welfare spending in the future, warns Professor David Bell, a Future of the UK and Scotland Fellow.

Indian student

'Study hard, aim high' for working class British Asians

A recent ESRC study found that many working-class ethnic minority families are inspiring their children to be high educational achievers – even if the parents have had very little education themselves.

Butler with tray

The life of a servant: less Downton, more downtrodden

Servant lives a century ago consisted of backbreaking work, long hours, low pay and often complete segregation from their superiors, says Dr Pamela Cox, Director of the ESRC Doctoral Training Centre at Essex University and presenter of a new BBC series.

St Paul's Cathedral

Religion and Society debate with Rowan Williams and Tony Blair

The Westminster Faith debates, organised by the AHRC/ESRC Religion and Society Programme, concluded with a debate between former Prime Minister Tony Blair, the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, and the former Daily Telegraph editor Charles Moore.

Crowd in street

Population 56 million - and counting

The newly published figures from the 2011 census show that the population of England and Wales increased with 7 per cent – 3.7 million – over the last decade. This is the largest jump in population figures since the first census in 1801.

Crowd of people

Counting without the census

With a more mobile population and more complex households and ways people live, it becomes more difficult to capture changes in society with the traditional census. New methods for collecting population information are now being considered.

University faculty

The university effect

Universities have a significant impact on local regions - from increasing local employment, to students moving into residential areas, to boosting nightlife, to altering the whole image of a town, according to ESRC-funded research.


Jobless immigrants prefer to leave

Research shows that labour migrants leave the country relatively quickly if they are out of work. "A substantial proportion of immigrants leave the host country eventually, and many do so within 24 months," concludes a NORFACE report.

Hafod Copperworks

When Welsh copper conquered the world

An exhibition focusing on the Welsh copper industry examines how this global industry affected Wales' social, cultural and urban development.

Sign language

Changing signs for the Queen's speech

Research shows that Deaf translation of the Queen's speeach has changed over the last decades, from Sign Supported English to an emerging 'Received Pronunciation' of British Sign Langauge.


Taking terror out of the community

A new report from the Religion and Society Programme highlights the importance of relationship-building between police officers and community members to prevent extremism among Muslim youths.

Job search online

The scars of unemployment

The number of 16 to 24-year-olds out of work rose to 963,000 in the three months to February, while the total number of unemployed went down by 17,000. ESRC-funded research has examined how recession affects the job market, and the health effects on the unemployed.

Census form

Making sense of the census

The 'stock take' of UK residents on census day Sunday 27 March provides valuable data for social scientists.

Medical check-up

The ethnicity of heart disease

Cardiovascular diseases are the main cause of death in the UK, and new research based on longitudinal studies shows how people from some ethnic backgrounds are more at risk than others.

Jubilant girl

Power to the people

The vision of active local communities, reinvigorated and empowered by engaged residents, is at the heart of the drive for ‘Big Society’.

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