Professor Dame Margaret Whitehead gives this year's talk, entitled 'The Great Leap Backwards: What is happening with social policy for child health and wellbeing?'
  • Date 15 November 2019 - 5.00 p.m.
  • Location Auditorium, St John's College

This year's Sidney Ball Lecture, in association with the Department of Social Policy and Intervention, will be given by Professor Dame Margaret Whitehead, W.H. Duncan Chair of Public Health in the Department of Public Health and Policy at the University of Liverpool, and, since 2005, Head of the World Health Organisation Collaborating Centre for Policy Research on Determinants of Health Equity. She was awarded a Damehood in 2016 for services to public health, and in particular the field of health inequalities.

There is abundant evidence of the national policies that are needed to give all children the best possible start in life.  Previously in the UK, concerted efforts have been made to implement such policy recommendations in the social, economic, education and welfare sectors. These efforts have led to a sustained reduction in child poverty and improvements in children’s services, which in turn have contributed to improved health and life chances.  Currently, however, we are seeing a halting or reversal of the favourable policy direction, resulting in a rise in child poverty and a worsening of the conditions in which families with young children live. From a public health perspective, the unprecedented rise in infant mortality in the most disadvantaged areas of the country is a most disturbing development. These policy and health reversals have been termed “the Great Leap Backwards” and are the focus of this 2019 Sidney Ball Lecture, together with a questioning of what can and should be done about it.

The lecture will be followed by drinks.

Booking essential - reserve your free place now on Eventbrite.

*Sidney Ball was a Fellow and sometime Senior Tutor of the College, who helped found Barnett House and was instrumental in setting up the courses that developed into the PPE degree.