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LSE Housing and Communities Event
High Rise Hope Revisited

HIGH RISE HOPE REVISITED - report LAUNCH EVENT

High Rise Hope Revisited: The social implications of upgrading the energy efficiency of large estates

Thursday 12th February 2015, 5-6.30pm, followed by a reception and networking 6.30-7.30pm. Refreshments will be served from 4.30pm

Venue: London School of Economics, 32 Lincoln’s Inn Fields: First floor Conference Room

Campus map; nearest tube station: Holborn

RSVP to lsehousingandcommunities@lse.ac.uk by 6th February.  For more information about the research or the event contact n.serle@lse.ac.uk or kayleigh.hume@rockwool.com

READ THE EXECUTIVE SUMMARY HERE

READ THE FULL REPORT HERE

 

In 2012 the London School for Economics and ROCKWOOL published High Rise Hope, a path-breaking investigation into the social impact of whole building energy efficiency refurbishments in residential tower blocks.

Following this research, LSE Housing and Communities went back to the Edward Woods estate in Shepherd’s Bush, in the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, to re-interview residents once the upgrading work was complete. High Rise Hope Revisited highlights lessons learned and the potential social and community impact from transforming a 1960s local authority housing estate into a landmark retrofitted high rise model of social housing. The project provides many invaluable lessons for large-scale energy efficiency schemes showing how energy saving can help take millions of people out of fuel poverty, if accompanied by support and advice to help tenants cut energy use.

KEY FINDINGS INCLUDED:

• Addressing issues of fuel poverty and energy efficient improvements to the existing housing stock
• Improving quality of life and conditions in individual homes and wider estates and neighbourhoods
• Making people feel proud of the aesthetic improvements to their area and general upgrade – people feel their area compares well with others

 

Join us on the 12th February 2015 at the London School of Economics to discuss findings and lessons learned. A range of key industry figures will also be presenting on a selection of related topics around social housing, with an opportunity to network.

PROGRAMME:

• Why retrofitting high-rise makes sense 
Sunand Prasad, Senior Partner Penoyre & Prasad LLP and ex-President of RIBA

• Edward Woods estate: what can social landlords do  
Darren Snaith, Director of Refurbishment and Regeneration, ROCKWOOL UK

• High Rise Hope Revisited: what residents tell us about their community and the experience of major reinvestment, what the lessons hold for the future 
Prof. Anne Power, London School of Economics

• The long term gains of retrofitting the Edward Woods estate 
London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham

• Retrofit issues in social housing 
Andrew Eagles, Managing Director, Sustainable Homes

• Wilmcote House: What Portsmouth City Council hopes to achieve 
Steve Groves, Repairs & Maintenance Manager, Portsmouth City Council

 

For more information, see Rockwool's website:  http://www.rockwool.co.uk/solutions/facade+systems/high+rise+hope+revisited

 

 

 

 


News Posted: 30 January 2015      [Back to the Top]

New analysis published
Poor lose, and rich gain from direct tax and benefit changes since May 2010 – without cutting the deficit

New analysis from Essex University and the LSE analyses the impact of benefit and direct tax changes since the election in detail. This shows that the poorest income groups lost the biggest share of their incomes on average, and those in the bottom half of incomes lost overall.
  • In contrast those in the top half of incomes gained from direct tax cuts, with the exception of most of the top 5 per cent – although within this 5 percent group those at the very top gained, because of the cut in the top rate of income tax.

  • In total, the changes have not contributed to cutting the deficit.  Rather, the savings from reducing benefits and tax credits have been spent on raising the tax-free income tax allowance.

  • The analysis challenges the idea that those with incomes in the top tenth have lost as great a share of their incomes as those with the lowest incomes

The full paper can be downloaded here (pdf)

The research, by Paola De Agostini, John Hills and Holly Sutherland suggests that who has gained or lost most as a result of the Coalition’s policy changes depends critically on when reforms are measured from.

  • Treasury analysis, suggesting that those at the top have lost proportionately most starts from January 2010 and therefore includes the effects of income tax changes at the top announced by Labour in 2009 and taking effect in April 2010, before the election.

  • But if the Coalition’s impacts are measured comparing the system in 2014-15 with what would have happened if the system inherited in May 2010, they have more clearly regressive effect. 

  • This resulted from the combination of: changes to benefits and tax credits making them less generous for the bottom and middle of the distribution; changes to Council Tax and benefits from which those in the bottom half lost but the top half gained; higher personal income tax allowances which meant the largest gains for those in the middle, but with some income tax increases for the top 5 per cent; and the ‘triple lock’ on state pensions which were most valuable as a proportion of their incomes for the bottom half.

  • Some groups were clear losers on average – including lone parent families, large families, children, and middle-aged people (at the age when many are parents), while others were gainers, including two-earner couples, and those in their 50s and early 60s.

Prof Sutherland, Director of EUROMOD at the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) at the University of Essex commented: “It is striking how seemingly technical issues or minor differences in assumptions like which tax system is taken as the starting point for Coalition reforms, or whether to assume 100% take-up of benefits have very big implications for what we conclude about whether the rich or the poor were harder hit.”  

Prof Hills, Director of the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion at LSE, commented: “What is most remarkable about these results is that the overall effect of direct tax and benefit changes under the Coalition have not contributed to cutting the deficit.  The savings from benefit reforms have been offset by the cost of raising the tax-free income tax allowance.  But those with incomes in the bottom half have lost more on average from benefit and tax credit changes than they have gained from the higher tax allowance.”

Paola De Agostini is Senior Research Officer at the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) at the University of Essex.

John Hills is Professor of Social Policy and Director of the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion (CASE) at the London School of Economics.    

Holly Sutherland is Research Professor and Director of EUROMOD at the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) at the University of Essex. 

The paper was prepared as part of CASE’s Social Policy in a Cold Climate programme, which is funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, Nuffield Foundation, and with London-specific analysis funded by the Trust for London.  The views expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the funders.  The analysis uses the tax-benefit model, EUROMOD, based at the University of Essex.


News Posted: 16 November 2014      [Back to the Top]

Department of Social Policy public lecture
Good Times Bad Times: the welfare myth of them and us

Date: Wednesday 12 November 2014 
Time: 6.30-8pm 
Venue: Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building
Speaker: Professor Sir John Hills
Respondents: Polly Toynbee and  Professor Holly Sutherland
Chair: Professor Julian Le Grand 

This ground-breaking book Good Times Bad Times: the welfare myth of them and us by John Hills, challenges the idea of a divide in the UK population between those who benefit from the welfare state and those who pay into it.

Here are are links to reviews/blogs of the book:

LSE Policy & Politics blog

New Statesman blog (Gavin Kelly): 11/11/14

LSE blog: with Podcast

Guardian review

Times Higher Education Book of the Week

Click here for the audio recording and presentation slides
from this event. A video recording is available here

The hashtag for this event for Twitter users:   #LSEwelfaremyth

 


News Posted: 12 November 2014      [Back to the Top]

New blog post
The cuts in local government funding have had a significant impact on London's most deprived communities

How has the significant cuts to local authority funding affected front-line services? There had undoubtedly been enormous strain on services and front-line staff, with councils have argued that the limits to efficiency have been reached. Amanda Fitzgerald presents findings from a new report for the Trust for London into the most deprived communities in London. Read the blog at LSE British Politics and Policy


News Posted: 23 October 2014      [Back to the Top]


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