Press coverage from other years
SIRC in the News
Press coverage from 2005
- Times — 31.12.2005
What's in store – Obesity Backlash. Body & Soul peers into its big crystal ball and predicts the hottest health trends for 2006
We've been scared silly by projections of children being afflicted by obesity-related diseases. Now watch the food industry fight back. Last year a report was published by the independent Social Issues Research Centre, in Oxford, saying that claims of an obesity epidemic are not supported by the evidence. The view has been pounced on by doctors who believe that they should cure people rather than teach them how to live, and by food manufacturers keen to resist advertising restrictions. This year the battle will begin, as the Food Standards Agency stakes all on getting food companies to use labels indicating which are the fattiest, saltiest foods.
- The Australian — 31.12.2005
The I-want-it-now years. Less than half the decade remains but we are still in search of meaning for our time … The rise of the iPod, a Noughties emblem, symbolises the smorgasbord life has become. Podcasting and music and video downloads let us read, hear and even watch what we want, when we want it. It is the era when everything retro is hot and everything new is too. From geek chic to red-carpet glamour, everything goes as long as you've got the nerve to carry it off. Britain's independent, Oxford-based Social Issues Research Centre confirms the new eclecticism, choosing what you want, in a 2005 study titled The Noughty Years, exploring the habits and thinking of gen-Yers who left British schools as the new millennium dawned and are now in their early 20s.
- Agence France Presse — 23.12.2005
"Love, from…" l'Angleterre à travers ses cartes de voeux "L'habitude d'envoyer des cartes de voeux illustre la courtoisie à l'anglaise", ajoute l'anthropologue Kate Fox, auteur du best-seller "Observer les Anglais" (Watching the English). "Il ne s'agit pas de maintenir le contact, de marquer un geste d'amitié, mais d'éviter le contact social, de garder les gens à distance. Nous envoyons une carte chaque Noël et c'est tout, nous avons rempli notre devoir, nous n'avons pas besoin de davantage de contacts avec cette personne", ajoute cette sociologue. "Il existe des membres d'une même famille qui se détestent cordialement et pourtant s'échangent des cartes très polies chaque Noël", relève-t-elle.
- Times Higher Education Supplement — 23.12.2005
Pssst, You're A Natural Gossip. Idle chat and text messaging are modern curses, right? Wrong, says Simon Blackburn, they are simply 21st-century versions of ancient rituals…Are changes in communication altering, for the worse, our precious human relationships? Does the medium drown, distort, cheapen, corrupt and nullify the message? … Fortunately, as so often happens, social science can come galloping to the rescue. According to the Social Issues Research Centre, a fair amount is known about mobile phone communication. And the breaking news is that by far the bulk of it is gossip. Furthermore, men gossip just as much as women, which is very surprising, given (their finding, not mine) that only women are skilled at the essential virtue of a gossip, which is, as speaker, to invest every triviality with a sense of drama that would have been the envy of Sarah Bernhardt, and as listener to give copious feedback, shrieking in that satisfactory way that so soothes the lives of train travellers. Men, less skilled or perhaps more worldly wise, but in any case bearing out Simon Baron-Cohen's thesis that the male brain is halfway to the autistic brain, apparently manage the same amount of gossip but more solipsistically, without either the dramatics or the reaction from their male audience.
- Agence France Presse — 22.11.2005
British pubs still very much the public house. Public living room, office, canteen, an escape, a place to chat, laugh or socialise, a venue for parties and wakes, the pub is still the heartbeat of British life. "For lots of us it's kind of a second home", said social anthropologist Kate Fox, the director of the Social Issues Research Centre, based in Oxford, southern England. "Pubs still play a central role in British life and culture, and that's not a cliche," she told AFP.
- Daily Nation (Kenya) — 22.11.2005
Bottoms up! "I have taken more out of alcohol than alcohol has taken out of me" - Winston Churchill. When he made this remark, Winston Churchill might as well have been referring to the regular Kenyan drinker, who treats the pub like a shrine … And why are Kenyans generally so loud while drinking? According to a survey by the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford, UK, the effects of alcohol in a country depend on the local cultural beliefs about alcohol. Thus societies with generally positive beliefs about alcohol experience fewer alcohol-related problems while the case is the opposite in countries with negative or inconsistent beliefs.
- Johannesburg Mail & Guardian — 22.11.2005
British pubs still very much the public house. Public living room, office, canteen, an escape, a place to chat, laugh or socialise, a venue for parties and wakes, the pub is still the heartbeat of British life. "For lots of us it's kind of a second home", said social anthropologist Kate Fox, the director of the Social Issues Research Centre, based in Oxford, southern England. "Pubs still plays a central role in British life and culture, and that's not a cliche." She highlighted the central role played by public houses in soap operas, the most popular programmes on British television, where much of the drama is played out.
- Times of India — 21.11.2005
Forever browsing. The age of the yuppies is over; now is the time for yeppies. Or in other words, the Young Experimenting Perfection Seeker. And more often than not, their search for that one right something, whether a job, a car, or a soulmate, starts with some browsing on the Net … Or so says the Britain-based Social Issues Research Centre, that conducts studies on lifestyle issues. The report says this is one reason for delayed marriages in UK: in 1971, women were getting married at the age of 23 and men at 25; in 2003, the average age went up to 29 for women and 31 for men.
- Sunday Times — 20.11.2005
Late licences to fuel £500m alcohol boom. Late-night drinking laws are predicted to fuel an estimated £500m increase in sales of beer, wine and spirits, undermining government promises to end Britain’s binge culture … A Home Office white paper that outlined the reforms drew heavily on a 1992 report entitled Drinking and Public Disorder, which said more flexible drinking hours would lead to "significant reductions" in drink-related offences.
- Guardian — 18.11.2005
Speed cameras blamed for rise in number of women fined. Peter Marsh, the director of the Social Issues Research Centre and joint author of the book Driving Passion: The Psychology of the Car, said: "You can imagine, especially if the woman driver was quite pretty, that a policeman would tick her off and send her on her way. It's a plausible explanation for the rise, though I'm not sure there's any proof." Mr Marsh said it could also be that women were getting caught because they are driving faster. While men drove in a "macho, thrill-seeking" way, women were formerly more considered, he said. "That seems to be changing, the gap seems to be narrowing. Women are becoming far more risk-taking and more adventurous – a lot more like the old stereotype of men."
- Cornell Daily Sun, NY — 18.11.2005
What Happened to Lindsay? Remember that sweet little red head made famous by Disney and infamous for partying? She had great features, a gorgeous smile, and was probably the object of countless male-pioneered internet searches … Since then she has been replaced by a gaunt, sickly looking girl, with bleach-fried porn star platinum blonde hair … The measuring stick for beauty is a physique that is only achievable by a miniscule fraction of today’s society. In fact, the Social Issues Research Centre indicates that the media ideal for thinness for women is attainable by less than five percent of the population.
- BBC — 07.11.2005
Hormones make women safer drivers … Dr Peter Marsh, author of Driving Passion: The Psychology of the Car, believes men and women have inherent differences which manifest themselves behind the wheel. He says men like risk-taking, the thrill of the chase and sensation-seeking, while women are more cautious. Women's accidents tend to be at roundabouts and T-junctions but at slower speeds than men, who are involved in more serious crashes because they can't brake quickly enough.
- Sunday Telegraph (Australia) — 06.11.2005
A Nation of Cyber-Flirts. This sense of being in a parallel universe (with its conveniently flexible moral boundaries) may explain why it seems appropriate to sign off with an affectionate "xx" – even when the recipient of said affection is someone we wouldn't pucker up to in a million years. Kate Fox, co-director of Britain's Social Issues Research Centre, describes cyber communications as occurring in a "liminal zone", that is, a well-documented phenomenon "in which normal rules and social constructions are suspended".
- Sunday Times — 30.10.2005
Alive: Girls go mad for a makeover. A birthday treat means pampering not pass the parcel these days, but is it harmless fun or does it make children obsess about self-image … Maggie Mellon, the director of children and family services at the charity Children 1st, believes they could be harmful. "Makeovers are all about how you look and it is probably not a good idea to make children body conscious at such a young age. Teenage years come all too quickly," she says. "Face-painting is a much more appropriate and fun way for little girls to celebrate birthdays." Mellon’s concerns are borne out by a survey carried out by the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford. It found that humans begin to recognise themselves in mirrors at about the age of two. "Female humans begin to dislike what they see only a few years later," it concludes.
- Mirror — 24.10.2005
iPod The Icon. The iPod is already ranked as an icon of 21st century Britain, a report shows today … No music defines this age — as Glam Rock and Soul did theirs — as "anything goes" in the fashion and music worlds … The Social Issues Research Centre report also showed the Noughties generation will, on average, marry six years later than in 1971.
- Western Courier — 21.10.2005
You are free to love your body. According to statistics provided by the Social Issues Research Centre, over 80 percent of fourth grade girls have gone on a fad diet. Did you know that the average weight of a model is 77 percent less than that of an average woman, and 20 years ago models were only 8 percent lower than average women? With all of the negative ads and images that are forced upon women, it is about time women spoke up about it.
- Telegraph — 05.10.2005
High house prices fuel bingeing at the bar, says professor. High house prices contribute towards binge drinking, a leading academic claimed yesterday. Cary Cooper, professor of organisational psychology and health at Lancaster University Management School, said that because many people between 25 and 35 did not have enough money to buy a home, they went to the pub instead … The Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford found that public opinion believed that "settling down" later had led to increased drinking, and respondents to its survey cited the influence of greater disposable income on the binge-drinking culture.
- British Airways Business Life — 30.09.2005
Skiing – 'Spending the Kid's Inheritance' … Twentysomethings divide into Extremers: dangerous sports enthusiasts and would-be global nomads, or dithering Yeppies — 'Young Experimenting Perfection-seekers' who, the Social Issues Research Centre says, are ambitious but confused and won't commit to anything until they know it will bring them lasting happiness …
- Q — Winter 2005
Healthy Eating. The Social Issues Research Centre: Timeline of Dietary Advice is a work in progress highlighting the swings in dietary fashion from prehistoric times, right up to date charting the rise and fall of food items, including those that are claimed to cause or protect against cancer, blood cholesterol, obesity, heart disease or migraines. The
timeline is added to as new advice and fads emerge.
- The Wave Magazine — 24.08.2005
Flashback to Flash Mobbing. Fellow nerds at The Social Issues Research Centre define a flash mob as "a large group of people who gather in a predetermined location, perform some brief action and then quickly disperse." Flash mobbing is the latest movement to peek out from the hip and exclusively cool underground. I’ve always wanted to be one of these cool kids, but every time I hang out with them, someone starts the rumor that I’m a cop and everyone sort of disappears (like a flash mob!). And then I’m left drinking alone. Again.
- Telegraph — 22.08.2005
Scent is not to be sniffed at. We underestimate the importance of our sense of smell to our wellbeing – as Barbara Lantin discovered when she lost hers … "The male pheromone androstenol, the scent produced by fresh male sweat, is attractive to females," says Kate Fox, author of the Social Issues Research [Centre's] Smell Report. "But androstenone, produced by male sweat after exposure to oxygen – in other words, when less fresh – is perceived as highly unpleasant."
- Independent — 20.08.2005
Kate Fox: Behaviour sleuth. When I meet Kate Fox, the 43-year-old social anthropologist and director of the Oxford-based Social Issues Research Centre (Sirc), we are soon talking about a very weighty issue – mobile phones. Fox, a trendspotter with a natural skill for making her topic sexy and enjoyable, is explaining how the future is "morally neutral. It is neither positive nor negative. It just is and we will make what we will make of it because of the givens of human nature. The challenge is to understand how those givens – how we are wired, if you like – will affect how we react to what happens in the future."
- Pittsburgh Post Gazette — 16.08.2005
How computers are changing movies and gossip …Verbal gossip is so 20th century. The current fad is mobile gossip, says Britain's Social Issues Research Centre. Mobile phones are the new backyard fence, allowing us to spread gossip at the speed of light, as long as we don't get cut off by bad reception. "In the fast-paced modern world," the SIRC said, "we had become severely restricted in both the quantity and quality of communication with our social network. Mobile gossip restores our sense of connection and community, and provides an antidote to the pressures and alienation of modern life."
- Times — 14.08.2005
Are you experienced? Nonstop globetrotting in search of the perfect life might be great at 20, but what if you’re still doing it at 40? … Yeppies - identified in a recent report by the Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC) - are life shoppers who browse careers, relationships and lifestyles in search of the dream existence, putting off grown-up decisions and commitments until they are satisfied they have exhausted all the options. And the poster children for the yeppie generation are certainly out there. Look at the singer/songwriter James Blunt, 28, who left the Household Cavalry only to storm up the music charts. Or Tilly Bagshawe, who quit her job as a headhunter at 29 to become a bestselling novelist.
- Times — 06.08.2005
What are . . . 'Yeppies'? Many of us can remember where we were when we first heard about the idea of the yuppie. I was 11 years old, sitting in the middle of the back seat of the car, when my mother swung around suddenly from the front seat. "See those people?" she said, pointing at pedestrians walking briskly and bearing briefcases. "They must be yuppies. Are you going to be a yuppie?" Thankfully I wasn’t. But the latest demographic acronym to emerge from the marketing ether is scarcely more inviting. According to a report published this week by Oxford’s Social Issues Research Centre, today’s young people between 16 and 24 are best characterised as Young Experimenting Perfection Seekers - or yeppies for short.
- Times Education Supplement— 06.08.2005
Teened Up For Tribal Id Parade. … Dr Peter Marsh, director of the Social Issues Research Centre and co-author of last year's FRANK report for the Home Office, says: "Like their tribal ancestors, teenagers today learn to understand who they are by defining themselves through social bonds and affiliations with a peer group. As they make the hormone-laden journey from child to adult, they forge a personal identity by first creating a social identity. Music tastes and appearance are the obvious ways to define oneself, but the ways in which young people talk about themselves to their peers also help them to create a sense of self. To be an individual, we first need to be one of the lads or lasses."
- Western Mail — 06.08.2005
Tom Jones to sell mam's home. Tom Jones is seeking a buyer for the …5.5m home which his beloved mother lived in for 24 years … A research project earlier this year found that people are most content with a house which has three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a small garden and, most importantly, no stairs … Simon Bradley of the Social Issues Research Centre said, "Arguably the most surprising finding to those of us who live in flats or homes with more than one storey is that the happiest homes are bungalows. Across all types of dwellings, however, the consensus is that they should be safe, secure, spacious, light, located in an area with a low crime rate and have good neighbours."
- Metro — 01.08.2005
'Yeppies' adopt a new way of life. You have probably heard of yuppies, dinkys and even sinbads. Now meet the yeppies. Anthropologists are calling the dithering twenty-something generation yeppies – Young Experimenting Perfection Seekers. Yeppies are ambitious but confused and won't commit to anything until they know it will bring them enduring happiness. The Social Issues Research Centre said today's graduates are adopting a 'browsing' approach to jobs, homes and relationships.
- Independent — 01.08.2005
Jemima Lewis: Since when did work bring you happiness? If anything could make one feel a nostalgic fondness for the Yuppy, it is the arrival of the Yeppy. A report published this week by the Social Research Centre has identified a new breed of ambitious twenty-something, dubbed the "Young, Experimenting Perfection Seeker". Whereas Yuppies had rather prosaic, old-fashioned aspirations – lots of money, a big house and an impressive job title – Yeppies aim for altogether loftier heights. They want a job that will bring them everlasting fulfillment. So instead of knuckling down to one profession, they spend their twenties "browsing" through various careers in search of The One.
- Observer — 31.07.2005
The Yeppies shop around for ideal life. They are twentysomething, ambitious and confused. And they won't commit to anything until they are certain it will bring them enduring happiness. Meet the 'Young Experimenting Perfection Seekers' – Yeppies, as anthropologists are calling them…'Unlike the yuppies of the Eighties, who were motivated by money and status and knew how to get both, today's young adults are less certain and less single-mindedly materialistic than their predecessors,' said social anthropologist Kate Fox, of the Social Issues Research Centre, who identifies the 'yeppies' in a report, commissioned by online auction firm eBay.
- South China Morning Post— 29.07.2005
Scent of attraction; Vanilla, musk and apple pie … the right fragrance will wrap you in an aura of sensuality. According to the Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC) in Oxford, Britain, the scent of attraction consists of biological, psychological and social phenomena. And before the rumblings and murmurs of "pheromones in a bottle" begin – yes, it's true. The initial scent of fresh male sweat does produce arousal in the fairer sex. But in a few minutes the seductive scent mixes with oxygen and goes pungently stale.
- Canoe — 20.06.2005
Disease warnings can be too scary. The UK-based Social Issues Research [Centre] (SIRC) has put numerous medical news stories under the knife and diagnosed them as having a severe case of exaggeration and an unhealthy lack of meaningful evidence. The organization accuses some of the media, the less scrupulous amongst medical researchers, and the pharmaceutical industry of spreading unfounded anxiety about health issues and, just as bad, false optimism with talk of medical miracles and breakthroughs. Perhaps then, the best medicine for the worried well like myself is a large dose of healthy skepticism…An hour on the SIRC website certainly left me feeling refreshed and reassured.
- Community Development Exchange — 20.06.2005
UK "more neighbourly". According to a recent study, 9.5 million people in Great Britain think they are closer to their neighbours now than they were five years ago. The research, for Halifax Home Insurance, included criteria such as 'sense of community spirit'. It found that Scotland is the most neighbourly area, and the North East of England had the lowest score. Peter Marsh of the Social Issues Research Centre commented, "What the results reflect is the enduring human need for a sense of belonging with others around them."
- Regeneration and Renewal — 17.06.2005
Better neighbours boost security, says research. The UK is a more neighbourly country than it was five years ago, which has helped to increase community safety, according to a new study published last week. Research by Halifax Home Insurance looked at the strength of friendships people have with their neighbours … Peter Marsh of the Social Issues Research Centre, who analysed the study results, said: "We can see it as a pendulum swinging back from the decline in the 1980s and 1990s. At that time people were looking after themselves, but now they are looking for a better quality of life rather than having a Porsche."
- Daily Mail— 10.06.2005
Good neighbour? You'll live north of the Border The report was published by Halifax Home Insurance and aims to take a light-hearted yet scientific view of community relations. It also found Britain to be more neighbourly than it was five years ago … Peter Marsh, of the Social Issues Research Centre, who analysed the results said: 'This research shows that Britain remains a neighbourly country, despite gloomy prognoses to the contrary. 'What the results reflect is the enduring human need for a sense of belonging with others around them.
- Western Mail— 10.06.2005
Are you really a friendly neighbour. A study by Halifax Home Insurance claims the Welsh are some of the best neighbours in Britain, coming fourth with the Scots topping the table and south west and north west of England in second and third … Peter Marsh, of the Social Issues Research Centre, said, "This research shows that Wales remains a neighbourly country, despite gloomy prognoses to the contrary. What the results reflect is the enduring human need for a sense of belonging with others around them. Our cities, towns and lifestyles may have changed quite markedly over the past century, or even the past decade, but our need to be part of a community remains."
- Glasgow Herald— 10.06.2005
Neighbours north of border are UK's best. Scotland is Britain's most neighbourly area, according to a survey published by Halifax Home Insurance today. It also revealed the UK is more neighbourly than it was five years ago … Peter Marsh of the Social Issues Research Centre, which analysed the results, said: "This research shows that Britain remains a neighbourly country, despite gloomy prognoses to the contrary … Our cities, towns and lifestyles may have changed quite markedly over the past century, or even the past decade, but our need to be part of a community remains."
- BBC News— 10.06.2005
Scots are most neighbourly in UK. A survey has suggested Scotland is the most neighbourly area of Britain. The report by Halifax Home Insurance also found the UK is more neighbourly than it was five years ago … Peter Marsh of the Social Issues Research Centre, who analysed the results of the study, said: "This research shows that Britain remains a neighbourly country, despite gloomy prognoses to the contrary. "What the results reflect is the enduring human need for a sense of belonging with others around them."
- Times Educational Supplement— 10.06.2005
Junk Food. … "Choosing junk food becomes a form of protest, like smoking," says Dr Peter Marsh, director of the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford, which has been looking at young people's attitudes to food. "Teenagers know what they are eating is considered 'bad' and choose deliberately to fly in the face of the healthy eating mantra. It has a certain kind of shock value."
- Guardian — 10.06.2005
For the good neighbour policy, look northwards. "This research shows that Britain remains a neighbourly country, despite gloomy prognoses to the contrary," said Peter Marsh of the Social Issues Research Centre, who analysed the results of the study. He said: "Our cities, towns and lifestyles may have changed quite markedly over the past century, or even the past decade but our need to be part of a community remains."
- Sunday Express — 08.05.2005
Love And Intuition Will Overcome the Perils of Parenting; Leader Being a parent is now seen as problematic, "something for people to fret about, " says Dr Peter Marsh, director of the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford, in a study last week … More than half the parents polled confessed that the biggest problem they experienced in child rearing was a sense of inadequacy. The most encouraging aspect of this finding is that we recognise the problem. Thank goodness w e realise low self-esteem in parenting is not an asset. This crisis in confidence is peculiar to modern parenting.
- Times — 05.05.2005
Parents have kept all the same hopes but lost some confidence. Peter Marsh, a director at the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford and author of the report, said that social, cultural and economic upheavals in the past 400 years appeared to have had little effect on people’s perceptions of biological destiny. "Here we are expressing very basic needs and desires which are probably very little different to those people held 400 years ago," Dr Marsh, a chartered psychologist, said.
- Brabants Dagblad — 03.05.2005
Standplaats: White Van Man. Wie een White Van Man tegenkomt, kan maar beter op de rem trappen, want hij doet er alles aan zich in het kleinste gaatje te wurmen in plaats van ander autoverkeer voor te laten gaan. Hij beheerst feilloos een tweede taal ('Oi, you fucking bastard!'). Het Social Issue Research Centre in Oxford deed onderzoek naar het fenomeen en ontdekte dat de mythe rond de bestelbusmaniak – die in Engeland zelfs de voetbalhooligan voorbijstreeft in sociale ongewenstheid – allerminst strookt met de realiteit. Sterker nog, WVM rijdt zoveel veiliger dan andere automobilisten dat hij korting op zijn verzekeringspremie krijgt.
- Provinciale Zeeuwse Courant — 02.05.2005
Bestelbus. Britten ergeren zich dood aan hem; vele middelvingers gaan op naar de bestuurder van de met gereedschap gevulde bestelauto's, die zich door de straten beweegt alsof het zijn persoonlijke werkplek betreft. White Van Man heeft altijd haast (niet voor niets bestaat een computer racespel getiteld 'White Van Man: Crash Game'). Hij wordt getypeerd als eind twintig en afkomstig uit Essex, met een eenmansbedrijfje als loodgieter, dakdekker of elektricien. Hij verdient zijn geld per klus, dus reist hij met een noodgang. Wie een White Van Man tegenkomt, kan maar beter op de rem trappen, want hij doet er alles aan zich in het kleinste gaatje te wurmen in plaats van ander autoverkeer voor te laten gaan. Hij beheerst feilloos een tweede taal ('Oi, you fucking bastard!') en de functie van een knipperlicht ontgaat hem totaal. Tot zover alle vooroordelen. Het Social Issue Research Centre in Oxford deed onderzoek naar het fenomeen en ontdekte dat de mythe rond de bestelbusmaniak – die in Engeland zelfs de voetbalhooligan voorbijstreeft in sociale ongewenstheid – allerminst strookt met de realiteit. Sterker nog, WVM rijdt zoveel veiliger dan andere automobilisten dat hij korting op zijn verzekeringspremie krijgt.
[See also Amersfoortse Courant, April 30; BN/DeStem, April 30; Dagblad Tubantia/Twentsche Courant, April 30; Goudsche Courant, April 30; Haagsche Courant, April 30; Utrechts Nieuwsblad, April 30]
- Observer— 01.05.2005
Why beauty spas thank heaven for little girls. … Experts worry that the trend will exacerbate the increasingly troubled relationship between women and their self-image: a survey by the Social Issues Research Centre at Oxford found female dissatisfaction with their appearance begins at a very early age. 'Human infants begin to recognise themselves in mirrors at about two years old and female humans begin to dislike what they see only a few years later,' the report said.
- Telegraph — 28.04.2005
White van man offered route to respectability. Research by the Social Issues Research Centre for Renault also presents white van man in a different light, arguing that for every "dodgy" driver there are many more "diamond blokes" and highlighting the arrival of "new van man" or "silver van man". Silver van drivers are the "epitome of new van man, the vanguard of an aspirational class of people – one that increasingly includes women".
- San Diego Union-Tribune — 24.04.2005
Generous serving of nutrition info can help with health. For a good laugh, go to the Social Issues Research Center's Timeline of Dietary Advice. The timeline link on the right side of the page outlines the quirky dietary recommendations through the years, like the advice, circa 1911, to use starvation as a cure for tuberculosis, syphilis, asthma and cancer.
- Spiked — 18.04.2005
Pill panics and food fights … Fruit is now talked up as the most correctly healthy thing you can eat – which is why it is given to children at school in preference to milk, which is definitely out as far as some health experts are concerned (just think back to the 'Milk is bad for you' protests at school gates across the UK organised by the cranky People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals last year). But such judgements on food are rarely based on fact, and much better reflect the latest health/political correctness. As the Social Issues Research Council said of the FSA statement, 'This whole issue illustrates that the advice we are given about food does not always stem from real evidence but more from expediency'.
- New Zealand Herald — 16.04.2005
Euro violence ruining Pele's 'beautiful game'. Sociologists say crowd tensions are an ancient part of a sport dubbed "the beautiful game" by the Brazilian star Pele. But more recently, the flow of violence has spread from Britain to continental Europe, even if measures to control it are more effective than in the past. "It used to be called a British disease, but all of Europe has experienced some patterns of violence in crowd disorder, just as in South America," said Peter Marsh of the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford.
- Liverpool Daily Post — 16.04.2005
Trends: The Mores, the Merrier: How to Survive the Race-Day Rituals. According to research carried out by the Social Issues Research Centre, in Oxford, racegoers unconsciously follow a strict code of etiquette which smoothes the way ready for bonding opportunities with other people. Kate Fox, who wrote the report, found: 'Race meetings involve a degree of what anthropologists call 'cultural remission', a temporary relaxation of a society's normal rules and social constraints. 'This socially-sanctioned disinhibition is balanced by equally powerful laws of courtesy. Racing is a highly ritualised culture, and almost all activities, conversations and interactions at race meetings are conducted in accordance with ancient traditions.'
- Sunday Times — 01.04.2005
Watching the English "I don’t see why anthropologists feel they have to travel to remote corners of the world and get dysentery in order to study strange tribal cultures with bizarre beliefs and mysterious customs, when the weirdest, most puzzling tribe of all is right here on our doorstep." Kate Fox, social anthropologist and Co-Director of the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford, sets out in Watching the English to define what it is that makes the English quite so English.
- Saga Magazine — 01.04.2005
Why older means wiser. Something my friend and I didn’t know about each other (we had been out of touch over the years) was that we had both continued to take regular exercise: cycling, dinghy-sailing and fell-walking. We had never smoked, though we both admitted that we sometimes drank too much. So we were old guys and healthy guys - but were we wiser guys? Well, it seems that just deciding to make that 95-mile walk was a wise thing to do. According to a survey carried out by the UK Social Issues Research Centre, having a positive attitude to ageing not only makes you feel happier, it may also help you to live longer.
- Public Service Review — 01.04.2005
Obesity and the facts. Dr Peter Marsh, Co-Director of the Social Issues Research Centre, argues the case for a more measured attitude to the problem of obesity.
- Gulf Times — 31.03.2005
Soft stories. What's happening to the epitome of being English – the Stiff Upper Lip? If England's top football players, for one, are any indication, the SUL is quivering … A recent new study, released to coincide with frontpage pictures of [David Beckham] sobbing, declared that "big boys do cry". "Thirty per cent of all [English] males have cried in the last month. That is a very high figure," says Peter Marsh, director of the Social Issues Research Centre, which measured the emotional temperature of English men recently. "Only two per cent said they could not remember when they last cried.
- Spiked — 18.03.2005
Hard to swallow. Jamie Oliver's hit TV show Jamie's School Dinners seemed to endorse some 'porkies' about modern food … If food is a factor in rising obesity levels, this is due to the quantity being eaten, and the way it is consumed, rather than the way it is produced. And, as Peter Marsh from the Social Issues Research Centre points out elsewhere on spiked, the notion of an epidemic of childhood obesity bears little relation to what is actually happening: a very gradual rise in children's weight over the years, caused by a number of different changes in lifestyles.
- Usability News — 12.03.2005
Telewest tests out how Email is Scent. Kate Fox, director of the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford, says that by adding a third sense to the internet, Telewest is helping to 'humanise' cyberspace - using technology to re-create more primitive forms of communication. "The association of fragrance and emotion is not an invention of poets or perfume-makers. Our sense of smell is directly connected to our emotions – smells trigger very powerful and deep-seated emotional responses, and this additional element to the internet will enhance users' online experience by adding that crucial third dimension," she says.
- Obesity, Fitness & Wellness Week — 12.03.2005
Obesity Epidemiology; New study questions true prevalence of childhood obesity. Beliefs that childhood obesity is at epidemic levels and is rising exponentially may be no more than unsupported speculation, according to recent data from the annual Health Survey for England 2003, published by the Department of Health on December 14, 2004, and analyzed by the Oxford-based Social Issues Research Center.
[See also Lab Law Weekly, March 11; ; Medicine & Law Weekly, March 11; Biotech Week, March 9; Elder Law Weekly, March 9; Fitness & Wellness Business Week, March 9; Life Science Weekly, March 8; Science Letter, March 8, 2005; Health & Medicine Week, March 7.]
- Telegraph — 08.03.2005
Women may come to hate their bodies, but five-year-old girls.? … Actually, there has been a lot of research on these lines. In 1997, there was a survey about women and their body image by the Social Issues Research Centre at Oxford, and every statistic speaks of women's self-loathing. "Female dissatisfaction with appearance . begins at a very early age," the authors tell us. "Human infants begin to recognise themselves in mirrors at about two years old. Female humans begin to dislike what they see only a few years later." It went on to document research done in America, Sweden and Japan showing that little girls think they are fat. In Sweden, a quarter of seven-year-old girls had been on diets.
- Food Manufacture — 07.03.2005
Junk warning. Restricting children's choice of food will not tackle obesity, according to Dr Peter Marsh, director of the Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC) and director of MCM Research. "Demonising the 'junk' that they prefer is rarely a fruitful way of influencing them -- quite the opposite in many cases," he said.
- Independent — 05.03.2005
The good old days: abuse, play acting and assaults on referees. In a paper for the Social Issues Research Centre an excellent, much earlier, example is cited. It's from a report in the Leicester Mercury on 3 April 1899 of a match between Loughborough and Gainsborough: "The referee's decisions had caused considerable dissatisfaction, especially that disallowing a goal to Loughborough in the first half, and at the close of the game he met with a very unfavourable reception, a section of the crowd hustling him and it was stated that he was struck." And that's it. No shock, no horror, no wailing about what the world's coming to.
- Birmingham Post — 04.03.2005
Happiest homes in the UK. Some 2,000 people were surveyed by Halifax General Insurance and the Social Issues Research Centre and the bungalow appeared to inspire complacent declarations of well-being in a notable percentage. Sceptics might conclude that low level aspirations, and even age, limit any upwardly-mobile thoughts or pointless discontent with one's lot. But a look at today's "bungalows" in a modern property market should force a rethink. The developers may be rethinking. After all, their success depends on filling gaps and providing something that sells.
- Guardian — 01.03.2005
Shock, horror – I'm well. Of course, the health of our children is a serious matter. We don't want them to be obese ("British children's waistlines growing by an inch each decade, study shows"), nor do we want them to suffer sudden death syndrome while taking part in sport. Although, speaking of obesity (and isn't everybody – all the time?) the latest report from the Social Issues Research [Centre] claims that the childhood obesity problem has been "over hyped", that average weights have barely risen. and that we've all been panicking unnecessarily.
- Times — 25.02.2005
More than 8 million are now dangerously obese. However, some analysts claim that the picture of 'Fat Britain' being created by ministers is wildly exaggerated and based on inaccurate calculations of information gathered from people surveyed. The Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC), an independent think-tank, concluded this month that ministers and some health lobbyists were using an outdated mathematical system to show that the country faces an epidemic in childhood obesity.
- Politiken — 24.02.2005
Mandeadfaerd: Tudefjaes Eller Normbryder. Papirlommetoerklaedefabrikanten Kleenex har offentliggjort en undersoegelse foretaget af Social Issues Research Centre blandt 2.000 englaendere i alle aldre, og resultatet maa vaere en skuffelse for virksomheden, der vel har set et potentielt uopdyrket marked for sine taareafviskende produkter. For selv om 77 pct. af alle de adspurgte maend og 90 pct. af kvinderne mener, at det i de seneste 20 aar er blevet ' en lille smule ' mere socialt acceptabelt for maend at graede, er det langt de faerreste af deltagerne i undersoegelsen, der har det godt med selv at tude i offentlighed.'
- British Cardiac Society — 24.02.2005
Research Centre claims extent of childhood obesity vastly exaggerated. The Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC) claims that the scale of childhood obesity has been exaggerated and that there is no evidence of an 'obesity epidemic'. The SIRC, an independent organisation founded to conduct research on social and lifestyle issues, says that "hype and exaggeration of data may result in inappropriate health interventions". The SIRC analysed data from the 2003 Health Survey for England, which showed that an average 15-year-old boy weighed 9st 5lbs (60.7kg) in 2003, compared with just over 9st 2lbs (58.8kg) in 1995.
- Sports Management Magazine — 23.02.2005
Childhood obesity is not an epidemic claims research company. An independent research company has declared that claims that childhood obesity has hit epidemic levels are "mere speculation". The Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC), claims that the scale of childhood obesity has been exaggerated and is not supported by evidence. In a report, Obesity and the Facts, the SIRC has called for a major rethink about the reporting of obesity in both adults and children.
- Medical News Today — 23.02.2005
HDA comment on SIRC claims that child obesity fears are being 'over-hyped'. The Health Development Agency today cautioned against complacency in reaction to claims by the Social Issues Research [Centre] (SIRC) that child obesity fears are being 'over-hyped'. The SIRC has challenged the way that the extent of childhood obesity is estimated in the UK, and has concluded that there have been ‘no significant changes in the average weights in children over nearly a decade.' Their interpretation of data from the 2003 Health Survey for England shows only small increases from 1995 figures.
- Times — 22.02.2005
Top Stories. An independent think-tank has claimed that childhood obesity is being exaggerated and called government health policies misguided. The Social Issues Research Centre said that the Government should focus on issues that affect middle-aged and elderly people rather than stopping junk-food advertising on children's television.
- Natural Products Magazine — 22.02.2005
Report claims child obesity has been over-hyped. Health experts have criticized a new report that claims that the scale of childhood obesity has been exaggerated. The report, compiled by the Social Issues Research [Centre] (SIRC), compared average weights in 1995 and 2003 and concluded that average child weights have only risen slightly. The SIRC says that its findings "can be taken as evidence that there has been no 'epidemic' of weight gain, since an epidemic would certainly have affected average weights."
- Oxford Mail — 22.02.2005
Child obesity 'hype'. Claims that childhood obesity has reached epidemic proportions are over-hyped, researchers have claimed. The Oxford-based Social Issues Research [Centre] said it was no more than "unsupported speculation" to suggest there had been a huge increase in child weights … By analysing data from the 2003 Health Survey for England, the team showed that weights for girls and boys under 16 in 1995-2003 were broadly static, and questioned how a Department of Health survey in December could estimate that childhood obesity had increased by 15.5 per cent.
- New Scientist — 20.02.2005
Smelly device would liven up web browsing. "Our sense of smell is directly connected to our emotions," says Kate Fox, social anthropologist and co-director of the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford. "Smells trigger very powerful and deep-seated emotional responses, and this additional element to the internet will enhance users’ online experience by adding that crucial third dimension."
- The Grocer — 19.02.2005
Opinion. And now for the backlash? After spending much of last year reporting how the health debate was being spun out of control by the government, it was fascinating to see it get a taste of its own medicine this week. Even I was surprised at how new research by the Social Issues Research Centre … was picked up with such alacrity by the national media. In short, SIRC accuses the government of over-stating the prevalence of obesity among children its 7% not 15%, apparently. As a result, the government had an uncomfortable day or two defending itself against accusations of scaremongering over the health of the nation; it was guilty of supersizing its facts and figures. The important point, I guess, is that it doesn't really matter whose figures are right or wrong because they both show obesity in children is increasing. And all of us in this industry know there are serious issues that need to be addressed if the health of the nation never mind the health of our kids is to be improved. But whatever actions we take must be proportionate to the problem, and they need to be focused on the real issues if they are to be effective. As we argued throughout last year, scaremongering, spin and anti-food industry rhetoric are not the best foundations on which the government, or its advisors, should base policies. After all, if your foundations are a bit dodgy, then whatever you try to build on top is probably doomed. If nothing else, this weeks reaction to the SIRC research again shows just how shaky some of the foundations set out in the Public Health White Paper actually are.
- Times — 18.02.2005
Remember the child obesity epidemic? That was the one that was meant to wipe out a generation, before we discovered that the epidemics of passive smoking and binge drinking are apparently going to get them first. Now a report from by the Oxford-based Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC) suggests that the panic about child obesity has been blown up out of all proportion.
- Royal College of GPs — 18.02.2005
No Evidence for Obesity Epidemic? Using the DH Health Survey for England 2003 as a statistical base, the Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC) has published a new report which argues that there is no evidence base to support claims of an 'impending obesity epidemic'. Among the report’s assertions are:
No indication of any significant change in the number of children with chronic illnesses, including type II diabetes, over the past 9 years. BMI trends have been broadly flat for both boys and girls aged under 16 years in the period 1995 - 2003. More young men and women in the 16-24 age group have a 'desirable' BMI of between 20 and 25 than any other BMI category. Men of this age are twice as likely to be underweight as they are to be obese.
- Internazionale — 18.02.2005
Inutili allarmismi sull'obesità. Secondo un rapporto reso noto dal Social Issues Research Centre di Oxford, finanziato sia dalle aziende alimentari sia dal governo, i dati sull'obesità infantile sono esagerati. Gli studiosi hanno confrontato il peso medio dei bambini nel 2003 con quello del 1995.
- Public Finance — 18.02.2005
Report finds childhood obesity not as big as it looks. Claims of an obesity epidemic among children have been grossly inflated and are not supported by evidence, according to researchers. A new analysis of obesity levels by the Oxford-based Social Issues Research Centre found that, between 1995 and 2003, body mass index trends increased only very slightly for both boys and girls. The average 15-year-old boy weighed 60.7kg in 2003, compared with 58.8kg in 1995. For 15-year-old girls the figures were 58.9kg and 58.5kg respectively.
- The Sun — 17.02.2005
Obesity Risk Real Britain'S top obesity expert last night slammed suggestions that national figures for overweight kids have been plumped up. Oxford-based think tank the Social Issues Research Centre claims that official statistics for obese kids are DOUBLE the true figure. But Dr David Haslam, chairman of the National Obesity Forum, said: "You just have to look around to realise Britain is facing a childhood obesity epidemic."
- Scotsman — 16.02.2005
Fat or fiction? The truth about our chubby children. The report yesterday by the Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC) claimed that concern over childhood obesity was unjustified – and went on to suggest that there was no basis for public health measures aimed at tackling the problem. The SIRC report made three main points: obesity had not become much more common between 1995 and 2003 in England; the health of children had not deteriorated and that obesity was a problem of adulthood.
- Edinburgh Evening News — 16.02.2005
Is childhood obesity fear a big fat lie? Warnings that childhood obesity has reached epidemic proportions have been hyped up, researchers said today … The SIRC agreed that there was a problem with growing childhood obesity, but suggested the problem may be far less advanced than previous studies suggested. The researchers said one method routinely used to measure childhood obesity in the UK was less sophisticated than the standard international measure.
- Reform — 16.02.2005
Study states child obesity figures are overstated. A study by the Social Issues Research Centre, a think tank, has show that the figure used by the Government that more than 15 per cent of all children are obese is out of proportion. The think tank argues that the Government should rethink its health policy as the actual figure is that less than 7 per cent of children were obese.
- BBC Newround — 16.02.2005
Report says obesity not a problem. Childhood obesity in the UK isn't as serious a problem as some people think, according to a new report. The Social Issues Research [Centre], which gets money from the government and companies that make food, says kids aren't much heavier now than in 1995. The SIRC says that the average weight of a 15-year-old has gone up by less than two kilos since 1995. However, another group called the National Obesity Forum say it is still a big problem and more needs doing.
- JB Medical News — 16.02.2005
Child obesity levels could have been exaggerated. The Social Issues Research [Centre] (SIRC) claims that childhood obesity has been exaggerated. The SIRC compared average weights in 1995 and 2003, and found that obesity levels have started to rise among older teenagers, but that middle-aged people were most at risk. The SIRC analysed data from the Health Survey for England 2003, and found that in 1995 an average 15-year-old boy weighed 9st 3lbs (58.8 kg) compared to 9st 5lbs (60.7 kg) in 2003. An average 15-year-old girl weighed 9st 2lbs (58.5 kg) in 1995 compared to 9st 3lbs (58.9 kg) in 2003. The SIRC concluded that there have been no significant changes in the average weights of children over nearly a decade.
- Birmingham Post — 16.02.2005
Childhood obesity 'epidemic' refuted. Claims that childhood obesity has reached epidemic proportions were over-hyped, researchers have claimed. The Social Issues Research Council said that it was no more than "unsupported speculation" to suggest there had been a huge increase in child weights.
- Evening Standard — 16.02.2005
New doubt over obesity 'epidemic' A new health survey has cast doubts over recent alarming public health statistics, such as the claim that one in six children in Britain is dangerously overweight. The Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC), an independent think tank, has concluded that ministers and some health lobbyists are creating a wildly inaccurate "doomsday scenario" by using an outdated system to calculate obesity.
- Guardian — 16.02.2005
Childhood obesity fears 'exaggerated'. Government claims that childhood obesity has reached epidemic proportions are "over-hyped" and "exaggerated", a thinktank claimed today. The scale of the problem has also been overstated in the recent health white paper, Choosing Health, according to the study published this morning by the Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC).
- Bakery & Snacks News — 16.02.2005
Childhood obesity figures inflated, say UK researchers. A new analysis by the Oxford-based Social Issues Research Centre, which is funded by food companies as well as the government, shows that there has been only a slight rise in average child weights during the last eight years.
The findings are in stark contrast with reports from other health bodies. The International Obesity Task Force said last year that childhood obesity in Europe was ‘out of control' and that 20 per cent of British children were overweight in 1998.
- EurActiv — 16.02.2005
Study: Obesity is not an 'epidemic'. The UK-based Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC) has released a new analysis of local data concerning obesity. The study criticises a recent UK government White Paper which points to the "rapid increase in child and adult obesity over the past decade", as well as other reports with a similar message. Analysing data from the annual Health Survey for England 2003, the study concludes that there was no significant change in the average weights of children between 1995 and 2003. Moreover, it claims that there is no evidence to prove that the health status of children has deteriorated – i.e. that there has been a significant change in the number of children with chronic illnesses over the past nine years.
- Scotsman — 16.02.2005
Childhood Obesity 'Epidemic' Is Refuted. Claims that childhood obesity has reached epidemic proportions were over-hyped, researchers claimed today. The Social Issues Research Council said that it was no more than "unsupported speculation" to suggest there had been a huge increase in child weights.
- BBC News — 16.02.2005
Child obesity fears 'over-hyped'. The scale of childhood obesity has been exaggerated, researchers have claimed. The Social Issues Research [Centre], which is funded by food companies as well as the government, said average child weights have only risen slightly. SIRC, which compared average weights in 1995 and 2003, said obesity levels have started to rise among older teenagers but the middle-aged were most at risk …The team from the SIRC analysed data from the 2003 Health Survey for England.
- Express — 16.02.2005
'Myth' of Child Obesity Plague The childhood obesity epidemic allegedly sweeping Britain is a myth, scientists claimed yesterday. They believe the Government used wrong statistics, and over-estimated the number of obese children by more than 100 per cent. The Social Issues Research Centre analysed statistical information on height and weight for boys and girls under 16. They found only a slight increase in the last nine years. "We do no service to the people at risk by 'hyping' their plight, exaggerating numbers or diverting limited educational, medical and financial resources away from where the problems really lie, " the report says. It claims the real threat is the number getting fat in middle age.
- Times — 16.02.2005
Obesity figures are out of proportion, health survey finds. Claims that one in six children is dangerously overweight and that Britain is in the grip of an obesity epidemic are exaggerations used by the Government to support ill-conceived health policies, a study suggests. The Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC), an independent think-tank, concludes that ministers and some health lobbyists are using an out-dated system to calculate obesity and create a doomsday scenario for public health.
- ePolitix — 16.02.2005
Obesity. The scale of childhood obesity has been exaggerated, researchers have claimed. The Social Issues Research [Centre] (SIRC), which is funded by food companies as well as the government, said average child weights have only risen slightly. SIRC, which compared average weights in 1995 and 2003, said obesity levels have started to rise among older teenagers but the middle-aged were most at risk. However, the National Obesity Forum insisted childhood obesity was increasing and had to be addressed.
- Organic News — February 2005
The Social Issues Research [Centre], which is funded by food companies as well as the government, said average child weights have only risen slightly. The scale of childhood obesity has been exaggerated, researchers have claimed. Dr Peter Marsh, co-director of SIRC, said: "Clearly there are some children who are too fat for their own good. But there has been very little change over the last decade, contrary to the lurid warnings."
- Telegraph — 15.02.2005
We should be building more bungalows. A survey by the Social Issues Research Centre reveals that bungalow-dwellers rated their homes at an average of 8.15 on a "Happiness scale" from 0 to 10. The survey echoes a study by the Alliance & Leicester which claimed that one in four homebuyers prefer bungalows.
- Liverpool Post — 15.02.2005
Viva!: No Fears For Tears; Can Any Real Man Cry in Public? According to the Kleenex For Men Crying Game Report, carried out by the Social Issues Research Centre, evolutionary psychologists argue that men have evolved to cry less than women because in hunter-gatherer times it would have been a display of weakness. It is also considered that crying could make a man less attractive to women.
- Guardian — 14.02.2005
Women 'need longer to learn to drive' Peter Marsh, of the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford, who has studied gender and driving, said the legacy of stone age man was evident in men's greater frequency of violation of traffic regulations, including speed limits and drink driving. "Levels of deviant behaviour are significantly higher in men."
- Scotsman — 14.02.2005
Men ARE better drivers, says UK's chief examiner. A report on sex differences in driving, published by Dr Peter Marsh of the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford, concluded men’s brains were still governed by the hunter-gatherer instinct. He said: "Stone-age men did not drive. But the legacy of his hunting, aggressive and risk-taking past – qualities that enabled him to survive and mate, thereby passing on his genes to future generations – are still evident in the way in which he typically drives his car.
- Birmingham Post— 14.02.2005
Motoring Groups Say Men Are Not Best Behind The Wheel. A report on sex differences in driving, published by Dr Peter Marsh of the Social Issues Research Centre, concluded men's brains were still governed by the hunter-gatherer instinct. He said: 'Stone-age men did not drive. But the legacy of his hunting, aggressive and risk-taking past – qualities that enabled him to survive and mate, thereby passing on his genes to future generations – are still evident in the way in which he typically drives his car. Levels of deviant behaviour are significantly higher in men than in women.'
- Sunday Telegraph— 13.02.2005
Word on the Street. While speaking before a House of Commons liaison committee last week, Tony Blair explained why he won't be seeking to meet his Government's target for reducing carbon-dioxide emissions by imposing fuel tax on airlines: "How many politicians facing a potential election would vote to end cheap air travel?" Yet the Government has done everything it can to put the environment ahead of homebuyers' right to live how and where they want. A survey by the Social Issues Research Centre reveals that bungalow-dwellers rated their homes at an average of 8.15 on a "Happiness scale" from 0 to 10. The survey echoes a study by the Alliance & Leicester which claimed that one in four homebuyers prefer bungalows.
- Scotsman — 10.02.2005
Humble bungalow is happiest house. Bungalows are Britain’s happiest homes according to new research that questioned households on issues ranging from security to décor … Simon Bradley of the Social Issues Research Centre, who compiled the report for Halifax General Insurance, said: "The happiness of a home is influenced by a complex interaction of physical factors, proximity to amenities, and personal and emotional considerations. "Arguably the most surprising finding to those of us who live in flats or homes with more than one storey is that the happiest homes are bungalows."
- Times — 10.02.2005
Happiness is a bungalow, with three bedrooms and no stairs … The Social Issues Research Centre, which conducted the survey of 2,000 adults, found that the most popular definitions of a happy home were "a place where you feel safe and secure", "a place where you can relax" and "a place where you can be yourself". Eighty per cent of people questioned for the survey awarded their home a score of seven or more out of ten on the "happiness" scale, but bungalows were rated by their occupants as an average of 8.15. Home-happiness appears to be linked to the age of the occupants, with those aged 50 and over reporting significantly higher levels of happiness.
- Daily Mail — 10.02.2005
(No) stairway to heaven. Bungalows are Britain's happiest homes, a study has found. They ensure more contentment for those who call them home than any other property … Simon Bradley, of the Social Issues Research Centre – who compiled the report for Halifax General Insurance – said: "The happiness of a home is influenced by a complex interaction of physical factors, proximity to amenities, as well as personal and emotional considerations.
- Daily Record — 10.02.2005
The Highs and Bungalows; Happiness is 1-Storey House. Bungalows are Britain's happiest homes, according to research published yesterday … Researchers found that 12 factors, ranging from crime rate to decor, determined the happiness of homes. And occupants were most content with three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a small garden and no stairs.The Social Issues Research Centre compiled the report for Halifax General Insurance. SIRC's Simon Bradley said: 'Arguably, the most surprising finding to those of us who live in flats or homes with more than one storey is that the happiest homes are bungalows. 'Across all types of dwelling, however, the consensus is that they should be safe, secure, spacious, light, located in an area with a low crime rate and have good neighbours.
- Guardian — 03.02.2005
Women: Analyse this: Women agonise over their relationships. "The need to analyse relationships is hard-wired into our brains by hundreds of thousands of years of evolution," explains anthropologist Kate Fox. "We are programmed to nurture and care for our families and ensure the survival of the next generation. This requires a focus on relationships: attracting and retaining a partner/provider, noticing and responding to small changes in the behaviour of those we care about, predicting and anticipating their needs, preventing and defusing conflicts, enlisting support and cooperation and so on." My goodness, it's a wonder we have time to analyse at all.
- Sunday Times — 30.01.2005
Equal but different: how views are changing. Kate Fox, social anthropologist: "It has been shown time and again that there are differences between male and female brains – men being generally better at visual-spatial tasks, while women score higher on verbal/ communication skills. This would certainly go some way towards explaining the predominance of men in engineering. The implications of these general differences – in terms of recruitment policies and so on – are clearly a matter for debate."
- Wall Street Journal — 28.01.2005
How to Use Office Gossip To Advance Your Career. If you're convinced that gossip is nothing but monkey business, you're not far from the truth: a study last year led by Kate Fox, social anthropologist and a director of the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford, in the U.K., said gossip -- in the office, over the Internet, or on the phone -- is the human equivalent of the social grooming found in chimpanzees and gorillas. "It has similar effects…its stimulated production of endorphins causes us to relax and reduces heart rate," she says. "Gossip serves an important role in the workplace to provide a social map of your (work) environment and navigate the terrain."
- Daily Mail — 27.01.2005
Nip & Tuck Teenagers. Kate Fox, a social anthropologist and director of the Oxford-based Social Issues Research Centre: 'In 1917, the physically perfect woman was about 5ft 4in tall and weighed nearly 10st. Even 25 years ago, top models and beauty queens weighed only eight per cent less than the average woman. Now they weigh 23 per cent less,' she says. 'The current ideal for women is achievable by less than 5 per cent of the population – and that's just in terms of weight and size. If you want the ideal shape, face, and so on, it's probably more like 1 per cent.'
- Daily Record — 27.01.2005
Work Rest And Play; The Life Of The Average Toddler Is Not All Fun, Fun, Fun, It Seems.
Dr Peter Marsh, of the Social Issues Research Centre, which carried out the survey, said: 'There is more and more pressure on parents to be parent,teacher and development expert these days. 'It is good to see that parents are aware of the balance that is required for their children and are striving to achieve this regardless of recent indications from the Government that they plan to become more involved in family life.' In the study, three-fifths of parents played with their toddler for up to two hours a day and three-quarters said their child played alone for a similar amount of time.
- Daily Mail — 10.01.2005
Girl Racers. Peter Marsh, of the Social Issues Research Centre…suggested modern cars which give a sense of safety may be a factor in encouraging women to drive faster. 'The more protected they are, the less cautious these women will be,' he said. 'That's nice for them, but very bad news for stray pedestrians and cyclists.'
- Daily Record — 10.01.2005
Fast Women; Females Are New Menace On Roads. Peter Marsh, of the Social Issues Research Centre, who wrote Sex Differences in Driving and Insurance Risks, describes the trend as 'alarming'. He said: 'Over the past 10 years, we have found that more women are involved in speeding offences as well as incidents of dangerous driving. The gap with men is narrowing. ' Women are now driving Volvos and big 4x4s because they feel safe in them. And the more protected they are, the less cautious these women will be.'
- NZZ am Sonntag — 09.01.2005
Die "Alten" setzen die Trends. "Die reifen Konsumenten werden künftig vermehrt Trends setzen", erklärt Karin Frick vom GDI. Sie arbeitet derzeit an einer Studie über die "Generation Gold". Frick ist überzeugt, dass die Firmen ihre Forschung, ihre Entwicklung und ihr Marketing neu ausrichten müssten: "Im Seniorenmarkt werden bald mehr Neuheiten als im Jugendmarkt lanciert." Die Zielgruppe "50+" definiert sich nicht über das Lebensalter, sondern vor allem über ihr Konsumverhalten. Das deutsche Marktforschungsinstitut Team hat die Kunden in sechs verschiedene Typen unterteilt: anspruchsvolle Konsumfreudige, wertkonservative Geniesser, ausgabenbereite Innovatoren, sparsame Zurückgezogene, risikoscheue Traditionalisten sowie erlebnishungrige Aktive. Die Autoren einer Studie des englischen Social Issues Research Centre kamen zum Schluss, dass sich Frauen über fünfzig noch nie so gut wie heute fühlen.
- Mummy Too! Magazine — Jan/Feb 2005
How to Look Good Always. According to the Social Issues Research Center in Oxford, UK, subtle fragrances can have dramatic effects in improving your mood and sense of well-being. In addition, in experiments, subjects exposed to pleasant fragrances tend to give higher 'attractiveness ratings' to people in photographs. The regular use of pleasant fragrances helps to reduce mood disturbances in men and women.
- Sunday Times — 09.01.2005
Fast women show their claws. Speeding penalties are regarded by some as not very serious -an occupational hazard on a par with parking tickets. Peter Marsh of the Social Issues Research Centre, author of a tome called Sex Differences in Driving and Insurance Risk, says the trend is alarming. "Over the past 10 years we've found that more women are involved in speeding offences and incidents of dangerous driving. Men are still involved in more speeding and dangerous driving than women, but the gap is narrowing."