This working paper for PETRA by Prof John Middleton, Paul Southon, and Prof Jon Fairburn examines the environmental provisions currently being used in trade agreements and considers how the international environment conventions might help address some of the determinants of health that lead to non-communicable diseases. It provides a unique and comprehensive overview of the health risks from a range of issues including climate change, wildfires, extreme weather effects, air quality, hazardous waste, and chemicals. Three case studies are included to look at the environmental impacts of the UK-Australia trade deal, the Volkswagen “Dieselgate” scandal, and the growing problems of electronic waste.
Achieving environmental equity for everyone means that no single group or community unfairly shoulders the burden of environmental risk (such as flooding, pollution and the adverse impacts of climate change) or is unfairly denied access to environmental benefits (such as access to nature).
This survey refers to environmental ‘equity’ and ‘inequity. When referring to inequity we consider this as one of the main drivers of distributional inequalities. Inequality simply refers to the unequal distribution of environmental risks and benefits whereas inequity refers to unfair and avoidable differences between community groups and populations and is often the result of distributional processes including many decades of economic and planning policies. These differences can have far reaching impacts on people’s lives and on their health and wellbeing.
“The route to achieving equity will not be accomplished through treating everyone equally. It will be achieved by treating everyone justly according to their circumstances.”
Why are we conducting this survey?
Clean air, water and land, and access to high quality green and blue spaces is important for personal health and wellbeing. However, these necessities are unequally distributed with the result that some people can thrive whilst others are underserved and exposed to poor environmental quality and greater environmental risk. Those least well served are often communities in more deprived areas and/or those with above average rates of people of minority ethnic background. For example, analysis by the Environment Agency and others shows that more socially deprived communities are exposed to higher flood risk, and are more likely to have a waste sites located in their area.
The Government’s national 25 Year Environment Plan recognises such inequity noting that “pollution affects us all but it is the most disadvantaged in society who suffer more. The poorer you are, the more likely it is that your house, and your children’s school and playground are close to highly-polluted roads, and the less likely you are to enjoy ready access to green spaces”. Managing environmental equity is important in delivering on the Plan’s commitment to “ensure an equal distribution of environmental benefits, resources and opportunities”. In a recent speech on environmental equity and climate justice, Environment Agency Chief Executive Sir James Bevan said that the Agency needs to play its part so that “the Environment Agency is for everyone in this country, not just for some.” We will do this by working in, for and with communities and by making all decisions in the context of the relevant social, environmental and economic factors. Our internal Action plan EA2025 and our sustainability strategy, eMission2030, further set out our commitment to contribute to a just and fair society.
To help tackle environmental inequalities the Environment Agency wants to embed practices that ensure the work we do in the environment is fair and benefits those who need it most. In order to do this we want to understand how our work impacts on environmental inequity whether we adequately address inequity in our strategies, planning advice, regulation, building and maintenance of assets and in our partnership working; and what actions we need to take as a result. We anticipate that some action could be taken in the near term whilst other actions may take longer or require further resources, or may be beyond our ability to influence altogether. Actions we take must be consistent with our remit as defined by parliament, but we know issues around environmental equity and environmental justice are complex and far reaching, so we are keen to work with others who share our ambitions on social justice and the environment.
This consultation is part of an Environment Agency research project intended to help us develop our response to environmental inequity. We wish to hear from you about how you think we are doing on environmental equity, and what more we need to consider. We are seeking views from a wide range of stakeholders in our work, including those in civil society, such as NGOs, campaigning organisations and local community action groups. We particularly wish to hear from people who do not identify as under-represented groups, given their under-representation in the environment sector. The survey asks about your views on environmental equity and any experience of the Environment Agency, and your views on how we could best address environmental inequity in future. By completing the survey, you will contribute to the shaping of the Environment Agency’s work and our contribution to a more environmentally equal society.
Survey Structure The survey comprises questions that ask you to choose between or rate options, plus some questions that present opportunities to provide fuller written responses. The survey will take about 15 minutes to complete. All information will be treated confidentially, and individuals will not be identified.
This voluntary survey will help the Environment Agency develop a better understanding of how its work impacts on environmental equity. All data is anonymous and any data use will be non-identifiable (we are not collecting any personal data). To disseminate the survey we may use your individual email address. These have been sourced, and will be used, in compliance with GDPR – they will not be shared.
Full reference is Fairburn, J.; Schüle, S.A.; Dreger, S.; Karla Hilz, L.; Bolte, G. Social Inequalities in Exposure to Ambient Air Pollution: A Systematic Review in the WHO European Region. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2019, 16, 3127.
A new paper from Prof Jon Fairburn with collegaues in Germany. This is largely a technical paper looking at aspects of a German Index of Mutliple Deprivation. However it also considers general aspects of Deprivation indices and some of the approaches that are possible with the weighting of different components.
The article is open access so available to everyone and has a creative commons licence and has been published in BMJ Open Vol 9 Issue 8.
Stojčić, N, Hashi, I, Aralica, Z. Creativity, innovations and firm performance in an emerging transition economy (2018) Ekonomski Pregled, 69 (3), pp. 203-228.
Despite the longstanding consensus that creativity is the seedbed of innovation, the limited literature in this area fails to explore the contribution of various aspects of creativity to different stages of the innovation process or the mechanisms used by the management to foster the creativity of employees. This paper adopts a more complex strategy in order to highlight the role of creativity in the entire innovation process from the decision to innovate to investment in innovation, the transformation of innovation input into output and the effect of innovation output on productivity. A multi – stage CDM – type model encompassing different elements of creativity and practices designed to enhance creative potential is applied to the most recent Community Innovation Survey data. In modelling the management of creativity a distinction is made between decisions of firms to hire creative employees and the methods used to foster creativity of personnel such as multidisciplinary work teams, financial incentives and training for creativity. The results indicate that employees with creative skills and the adoption of creativity – enhancing methods by the management are important factors for innovation and better performance of enterprises. They also point to sectoral differences in the impact of creativity on innovation.
Abdixhiku, L., Pugh, G., Hashi, I. Business tax evasion in transition economies: A cross-country panel investigation (2018) European Journal of Comparative Economics, 15 (1), pp. 11-36.
This paper uses the Business Environment and Enterprise Performance Survey data for the years 1999, 2002 and 2005 to investigate business tax evasion in 24 transition economies. We use both conventional fixed effects estimation and the recently developed Fixed Effect Vector Decomposition approach. The most robust finding in our study is the importance of institutional factors. In particular, higher levels of corruption related to tax administration and slower transition reforms substantially reduce the amount of taxes paid by businesses in transition economies. In addition, we find a positive relationship between evasion and tax rate; and identify minor effects of the macroeconomic environment. We also find that social norms play a significant role in tax evasion. These findings inform policy recommendations intended to reduce either the possibility and/or the inclination to evade.
ARE YOU A PARENT SUPPORTING YOUR CHILD THROUGH PARENTAL BEREAVEMENT?
IS YOUR CHILD AGED 3-6 YEARS OLD?
This study by Staffordshire University needs parents with children aged 3-6 years’ old for a study on how children cope in education when one parent dies. Your participation is voluntary and is a 30-minute interview about your experiences and the involvement of nursery or school staff in helping to support your child. All interview data is collated on a digital device that is password protected.
RECOVEU – A participative approach to curriculum development for adults in addiction recovery across the EU
RECOVEU is a project funded by the EU and based on an international partnership of educators and practitioners working in the field of drug addiction.
During the course of the project an ‘Access to Learning’ pack to help adults in addiction recovery prepare for, and succeed in, further learning has been developed. The activities within the course take into account the specific barriers that socially disadvantaged people, such as those in addiction recovery, often face and their development has been informed by people in recovery and drug treatment providers.
The full Course Pack consisting of the ‘Access to Learning’ materials, Evaluation Toolkit and Guidelines for Delivery is freely available on an E-Learning Platform on the RECOVEU website together with an online ‘Train the Trainers’ module: www.recoveu.org
For further details of the project please contact: Tom Ward, Project Administrator (firstname.lastname@example.org)
With Ruth Smeeth MP -(Stoke-on-Trent North and Kidsgrove)
You are cordially invited to join us for a discussion on ‘Economic Renewal in Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffordshire’, organised in partnership with Staffordshire University.
This is an opportunity for academics, business leaders, students and local residents to begin a serious discussion about how to develop a long-term vision for the area.
The event will feature a keynote speech from Ruth Smeeth MP on the economic challenges and opportunities for Stoke-on-Trent followed by workshops and discussions on some of the issues facing North Staffordshire.
Using a sample of small and medium-sized enterprises from twenty-eight European countries, this study evaluates the input and output additionality of national and European Union (EU) R&D programmes both separately and in combination. Accordingly, we contribute to understanding the effectiveness of innovation policy from the perspective of policy mix. Empirical results are different for innovation inputs and outputs. For innovation inputs, we found positive treatment effects from national and EU programmes separately as well as complementary effects for firms supported from both sources relative to firms supported only by national programmes. For innovation outputs,we report no evidence of additionality from national programmes and cannot reject crowding out from EU programmes. However, crowding out from EU support is eliminated by combination with national support. These findings have policy implications for the governance of R&D policy
and suggest that the European paradox—success in promoting R&D inputs but not commercialisation— is not yet mitigated.
Key words: R&D support; SMEs; policy mix; input and output additionality; European paradox
Science and Public Policy, 2016, 1–16
My latest paper written with Werner Maier (Helmholtz Zentrum München, Germany) and Matthias Braubach (World Health Organisation) has just been published. The first draft of this was written using the Boice method that I have discussed previously
Second generation area-based indices of multiple deprivation have been extensively used in the UK over the last 15 years. They resulted from significant developments in political, technical, and conceptual spheres for deprivation data. We review the parallel development of environmental justice research and how and when environmental data was incorporated into these indices. We explain the transfer of these methods from the UK to Germany and assess the progress internationally in developing such indices. Finally, we illustrate how billions of pounds in the UK was allocated by using these tools to tackle neighbourhood deprivation and environmental justice to address the determinants of health.
Eroica Britannia at Bakewell is now in its third year and what a great event it is. A vintage bicycle festival over three days (17-19th June) with the bicycle races on the Sunday. Over the first two days activities include
Today, I delivered a Research Conversation (organised by Dr Katy Vigurs) . The theme was pre-research activity and then getting started. I have previously blogged about Boice Advice for New Faculty Members so I adapted some of that and some ideas of my own to develop and issue a challenge to the audience at the end
£10 for 10 days writing challenge rules
10 days of writing
20 to a maximum of 30 minutes writing per day
Monday to Friday only
8am to 6 pm
No references needed but you can include them if you want
ONLY Writing – not find references, etc.
Email partners to say done each day (optional but you will find it useful)
Email me the writing when finished to claim the £10
When I have used this approach I have found that I can write 200-250 words per day, so if everything goes to plan they should have roughly a 2000-2500 word draft at the end. Let’s get writing a little and often.
The idea is to change existing behaviour!
I accompanied the challenge with some tips:
Choose the same time everyday.
I chose to make it the first thing I did every day, so sitting on the desktop as I logged in was the word document.
Put a sign on the door DO NOT DISTURB !
Anyway the following signed up to the challenge:
Law – Hannah Jones, Rhona Hammond-Sharlot, Jo Beswick,
Business – Zedias Mutema, Hazel Squire, Ahmad Mlouk, Mark Wordley, Andy Hanks, Carol Southall, Stephen Kelly, Andras Kenez, Carl Cattell, Ganess Dirpal.
Provision of tourism attraction material in foreign languages is one way of attracting international visitors and the largest group of international travellers in the world are the Chinese middle classes. Staffordshire University often acts as host to Chinese visitors in the region due to the links we have with universities in China we also host to many Chinese students every year who come here to study.
Charlotte Rabey, Vincent Law, John Lowther and Frances Hunt
The first questionnaire is for accommodation providers, visitor attractions, cafe/restaurants and other parts of the tourism industry – these are the main focus of the project and we will be developing an online training site based on this feedback. The site will allow the training to be customised (e.g. according to the type of establishment, type of staff etc) and provide feedback on progress.Please access the tourism industry survey here.
The second questionnaire is for people living in areas with a tourism industrypresent. We have a short questionnaire of only 9 questions to get your views.Please access the community survey here.
Do you enjoy food and drink plus prefer exploring new regions? Then the recent announcement of Winners of the EU EDEN Destinations of Excellence Awards for Tourism and local gastronomy is just what you need if you are planning this year’s holidays in Europe.
According to data of the UNWTO, for about 44% of travellers around the globe, food is one of the three criteria they take into consideration when they decide where to travel. It is one of the top 5 factors driving visitors’ satisfaction. 1 in 5 international visitors to Europe are involved in gastronomic activities on their trip.
The EDEN Awards recognise the important work that is being done by the winning destinations with their specialised tourism offers. The awards help raise awareness for sustainable food tourism, and draws attention to exciting, little-known European destinations that are off the beaten track.
This is just a flavour of the events that are happening in the region over the next year. Many of these events provide volunteer opportunities for our students, credited work experience and some organisations become partners in our research. The Peak District is the most popular national park in Europe and provides a great laboratory for our field visits as well. So see the link if you want to know more about our courses in Events Management and Tourism Management or visit us on an Open Day.
If you are coming from France, Belgium, the Netherlands or even parts of Germany it is worth considering the train. If coming from Brussels or Paris it will be both quicker and cheaper than flying plus you can usually travel at a better time of day.
The German national railway site where you can look for journeys all across Europe is very good. Available in lots of languages click the flag icon at the top.
http://seat61.com/ an amazing site site full of hints and tips on train travel across Europe. You should definitely have a look at this site before you buy a train ticket.
You will need to change trains in London. You arrive in London St Pancras and you will need to go to London Euston. The easiest way to do this is to walk it (about 10-15mins), come out the main entrance onto Euston Road and then follow that in the south west direction (see http://goo.gl/maps/3t6Yt ). If possible try and book your ticket all the way through to Stoke on Trent as this is a much cheaper option in general. Paris to Stoke can be as little as £65 or 65 Euros one way (prices correct Oct 2019).
Flights and airports
There are four possible airports, in descending order of ease of travel to reach Stoke on Trent – Manchester, Birmingham, East Midlands, Liverpool.
Manchester – Has a dedicated train station (Manchester Airport) to connect to the main Manchester Piccadilly train station. Manchester Piccadilly to Stoke is about 45minutes on the train direct.
Birmingham – Has a dedicated train station Birmingham International with frequent services to Birmingham New Street which is the main station where you may need to change but there are also direct trains to Stoke on Trent. Direct journey time is about 1 hour 10 minutes.
East Midlands – If you are going to be hiring a car then this airport may be suitable. From the airport by car you come along the A50 in about 45mins to 1 hour.
Liverpool – again if you are hiring a car this may be suitable
Stoke on Trent train station is right next to the Campus and forms part of the University Quarter.
As you come out the main entrance you will see a statute of Josiah Wedgwood opposite. If you go left you will come to College Road, if you go right you will come to Leek Road (see the campus map link below).
I’ve just come back from a day long forum in Manchester (at the Radisson Blu – looks like a nice hotel, shame about the low-ceilinged, poorly lit, stuffy and cramped conference facilities. Oh well). It was run by ‘Inside Government’ and comprised a series of speakers from all over the country on postgraduate education. Some things I want to magpie:
Most presentations were reports on particular, innovative projects at various universities. Some were on postgraduate taught courses (PGT) and some on (PGR. Almost no one reflected on both. They seem to be viewed, almost instinctively, as entirely separate processes. I wonder if this is a trend on the increase?
Most, again, were focused on skills delivery, and of these, most on employability skills. It is flavour of the month (and for good reason, after all!), but I was taken aback at how few reflections there were on new types of route, new pedagogy, etc. Since the general consensus in the room seemed to be that ‘targeted’ PGT programs — programs designed for specific industries, even specific organisations — the focus on employability seemed to me particularly short-sighted. If all we can offer to a company is an enhancement of their employees’ ability to get a job elsewhere, that’s not helpful.
Some presenters spoke of p/t students, some of full-time. Few talked of both. Once again, the almost instinctive sense that these two groups might as well have been on different planets.
A PGT approach at Aston struck me as offering a great looking program, and a model for others: free language tuition, comprehensive peer mentoring, a specialist postgrad careers centre – these were a few examples of good practice. There was also an observation which hadn’t occurred to me before: that employers have a poor sense of what postgrad education offers by way of enhanced skills. We have to educate them. Not surprisingly, Vitae has taken a lead, with specific resources targeted at employers.
Data heavy presentation by Dr. Iain Cameron from RCUK, looking at some interesting conclusions drawn from HESA and other data-sets. Not a lot was surprising. More interesting to me were other instances of the ‘other world’ phenomena. There was a real sense that RCUK regularly distinguishes between haves and have-nots among PGR providers: big focus on doctoral training centres, for example, and some of the results (remember, we are talking about PhDs, here) were divided up by quartile of undergraduate admissions tariff (i.e. first year undergraduate selectivity).
A similar point was made by the presenter from Durham, who talked about some great PhD programs they run, always connected to a doctoral training centre. These were cohort based PhDs – in that way similar to a professional doctorate – except that these were full-time research council funded programs. Not many institutions, and fewer subject areas, would have the critical mass to do this. Are there now “two classes of PhD?” he asked, and “class” didn’t just mean type!
Finally, a good looking program from Edge Hill Business School. What struck me here was that the program was designed from the beginning to be both an MA route, and for individual modules to be available as CPD opportunities. That kind of flexibility should be a more common aim.