Deprivation data

Calculating measures of deprivation is perhaps one of the commonest uses of census data, it is a way of taking data on, for example, housing, employment, social class and availability of cars to create a single measure of how deprived an area is. There are a few different measures of deprivation that use different census variables or give different weights to the same variables.

Which one you choose to use is down to personal choice or it may be the one in use in a particular subject area, for instance, the Carstairs Index is heavily used in the Scottish NHS while the Indices of Multiple Deprivation are heavily used in local government. Not all deprivation indices have been calculated at all geographical levels or countries while some were only in use with certain censuses.

Carstairs and Townsend Scores based on 2001 Census Data

Paul Norman of the University of Leeds has reproduced Townsend and Carstairs indices using 2001 Census data. Paul has kindly allowed us to make them available:

29/06/06 - These versions of the Townsend and Carstairs scores have been re-calculated to exclude wards of less than 100 households, this only affects wards in the City of London and the Scilly Isles.

The English Indices of Deprivation

The Indices of Deprivation produced by Communities and Local Government (CLG) are measures of deprivation for every Lower Layer Super Output Area (LSOA) and local authority area in England. Separate Indices at LSOA level are provided for each of the seven domains of deprivation. This allows all 32,844 LSOAs to be ranked according to how deprived they are relative to each other. This information is then brought together into one overall Index of Multiple Deprivation.

The Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation

The Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation (WIMD) produced as a partnership project between the Welsh Assembly Government and the Local Government Data Unit - Wales, is a measure of multiple deprivation at Lower Layer Super Output Area level (LSOA). The model of multiple deprivation which underpins the WIMD is based on the idea of distinct dimensions of deprivation which can be recognised and measured separately. People may be counted as being deprived in one or more of the domains, depending on the number of types of deprivation that they experience.

Northern Ireland Multiple Deprivation Measure

The NI Multiple Deprivation Measure was published by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency. The dataset is at Lower Layer Super Output Area level (LSOA) with summaries for geographies at higher levels.

The Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation

The Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation published by The Scottish Government identifies small area concentrations of multiple deprivation across all of Scotland. The SIMD is presented at data zone level (Scottish equivalent of Lower Layer Super Output Area), enabling small pockets of deprivation to be identified. The data zones, which have a median population size of 769, are ranked from most deprived (1) to least deprived (6,505) on the overall SIMD and on each of the individual domains. The result is a comprehensive picture of relative area deprivation across Scotland.

Carstairs Scores for 2001 Scottish Postcode Sectors

Carstairs scores are derived by combining selected variables taken from small area Census data. The scores are described as a measure which reflects access to those material resources which provide access to "those goods and services, resources and amenities and of a physical environment which are customary in society" (Carstairs and Morris, 1991). The scores are not a measure of the extent of individual material wellbeing or relative disadvantage but are rather a summary measure applied to populations contained within small geographic localities (McLoone 2004).

1991 Carstairs Scores for Wards

The Great Britain (GB) scores were calculated using GB as the population base, and the Northern Ireland (NI) scores were calculated separately using NI as the population base. The data is at ward level. NB: The Scottish values are for wards, not postcode sectors.

This data is restricted to staff and students at UK higher and further education establishments.

1991 DoE, Jarman, Carstairs and Townsend scores for Wards in England and Wales

This data is restricted to staff and students at UK higher and further education establishments.

We are grateful to Jane Eimermann of the School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia, for creating this dataset and to her colleague Andrew Lovett for making it available to us. Any publications making use of their results should acknowledge their contribution.

1991 Townsend Scores for England and Wales

Townsend scores for England and Wales have been calculated by James Harris using the England & Wales population base (mean and standard deviation) at ward and Enumeration District (ED) level in plain text format with comma delimited variables (.csv).

This data is restricted to staff and students at UK higher and further education establishments.

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