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Cass Business School research cited in House of Commons report

Professor Les Mayhew's evidence referenced in Science and Technology Committee report

In December last year, Professor Les Mayhew was a witness for the Science and Technology Committee at the House of Commons. His evidence was added to the investigation into the impact of ending the Census on social science research.

Earlier this month the House of Commons released the full report into the findings which acknowledged Professor Mayhew's conclusion 'that there is a credible alternative to the Census for the purpose of local government.'

Mayhew's alternative to the Census, co-authored with Gill Harper, a former ESRC research fellow at Cass, proposes a new method for counting populations using locally available administrative records such as the GP register, council tax records, and school pupil records.

Professor Mayhew says: "Policy decisions need to be made from data that is both current and accurate. The Office for National Statistics itself questioned the value of the Census that takes place only every ten years of a population that is increasingly mobile. The ending of the Census and switching to administrative data combined with small scale surveys will usher in a new era for social science research."

He continues: "I would suggest that the Census had a stifling impact on research in social sciences and discontinuing it would lead to a huge period of innovation in the research community."

Professor Mayhew is a Professor of Statistics at Cass. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health and Honorary Fellow of the Institute for Actuaries and a former senior civil servant.

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