UWE+Tart Cafe present Social Science in the City

Issue date: 25 June 2010

UWE Thursday 1 July 2010 18.00 to 19.30
Tart Café and Food Store, 16 The Promenade, Gloucester Road, Bristol

The next Social Science in the City café organised by the University of the West of England at Tart Café on Gloucester Road will be held on Thursday 1 July from 18.00 to 19.00. The Social Science in the City Café series events invite members of the public to join in lively debate on topical social issues of the day.

This cafe event will include a talk entitled 'Why public spending cuts mean cuts to democracy' by UWE's Professor Saville Kushner from the Centre for Research in Education and Democracy.

Organiser Dr Stella Maile from UWE commented, “The Social Science in the City café series has been a great opportunity to get the public involved in having their say on the social issues that affect society now. There have been discussions so far on a range of issues from the breakdown of communities, to the role of education and perceptions of homelessness.”

Following the emergency budget this week, Professor Kushner's talk on public sector cuts could not be more relevant. We would welcome everyone to come along and take part in what promises to be a timely and emotive debate on this issue.”

The Social Science in the City events are designed to engage the public in research, and ideas being pursued by UWE staff from across the University, including the
Department of Sociology and Criminology, Centre for Psycho-Social Studies, the School of Education, the Bristol Business School, the Cities Research Centre; the Faculty of Health and Life Sciences and the Faculty of the Built Environment, among others.

In his talk, Professor Kushner will make the case for resisting cuts to public expenditure. He says, “There is no debt crisis in the UK. Historically, our National Debt stands at tolerable rates – even within limits set by the Maastricht Treaty. We have a Budget Deficit imbalance, however, but that is the result of insufficient taxes to pay for public services. No wonder - when Margaret Thatcher came to power the basic rate of tax was 33 per cent - now it's down to 20 per cent. So, should we cut services or raise taxes? We choose the former, it seems. But I think much of our democracy lies in our public services – the fairness of health services; the egalitarian opportunities of education; the security of a democratic police force; the social justice guaranteed by a government and legal infrastructure. Cut these and we cut democracy; 'savage cuts' to the welfare state are savage cuts to social justice.”

Saville Kushner is Professor of Public Evaluation at the University of the West of England, Bristol and Director of the Centre for Research in Education and Democracy. Saville's research interests fall under the umbrella of Democracy and Children's Rights. From 2005-2007, Saville has applied these interests to the field of international development working with the United Nations as Regional Monitoring and Evaluation Adviser to UNICEF in Latin America and the Caribbean. He has a special interest in the submission of research for the judgement of professionals and members of civil society.

Entrance to the Science Café is free, but it is advisable to book in advance. Please contact: Stella.Maile@uwe.ac.uk,

If you would like to engage the general public in your research/ideas through the Social Science in the City events – then please e-mail: Stella.Maile@uwe.ac.uk


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