More or Less was an idea born of the sense that numbers were the principal language of public argument. And yet there were few places where it was thought necessary to step back and think - in the way we often step back to think about language - about the way we use figures: what they really measure, what kind of truth, if any, they capture. Tim Harford explains - and sometimes debunks - the numbers and statistics used in political debate, the news and everyday life.
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More or Less
Tim Harford presents BBC Radio 4's surprising and refreshing guide to statistics in the news.
Available on BBC iPlayerBBC Radio 4 on Sunday
7th October 2018 at 8:00PM
- A-levels, drowning, dress sizes
- Grenfell Tower's Death Toll
- Electric cars, school-ready and feedback
- Are natural disasters on the rise?
- Statistics abuse, Tuition fees, Beer in 1887
- Uber, EU Passports,Counting domestic violence
- Missed appointments, Graduate pay, Cocaine on banknotes
- Gender pay gaps and how to learn a language
- A girl's first time, shark's stomachs, prime numbers
- Transgender numbers, parkrun and snooker
- UN rape claims, Stalin, Mr Darcy
How many schoolchildren are carers? Museum visitors vs football fans
A BBC questionnaire has found 1 in 5 children surveyed were caring for a family member with an illness or disability. The suggestion is that this could mean that 800,000 secondary-school age children are carrying out some level of care. Loyal listeners have doubted there can be so many young carers. Tim Harford and Ruth Alexander look into the numbers.
On the 20 September 2017, Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, where residents are United States citizens. George Washington University has published a report – commissioned by the Puerto Rican government – claiming that the hurricane accounted for nearly 3,000 deaths in Puerto Rico. President Trump disputed these official figures, tweeting that the Democrats were inflating the death toll to "make me look as bad as possible". So, who is right, and how do you determine who died as a result of a natural disaster? Tim Harford speaks to the lead investigator of the George Washington University report, Dr Carlos Santos-Burgoa.
The shadow chancellor John McDonnell recently claimed 'for the first time shareholders now take a greater share of national income than workers'. But is it true? Tim Harford speaks to The Financial Times’ economics editor Chris Giles.
Loyal listener David from Sheffield has been in touch to query a claim he heard on BBC Radio 4’s Start the Week that more people visit museums than attend football matches. Ruth Alexander finds out if we really do favour culture over the nation’s game.
Plus, what is the most dangerous sport? Tim Harford thinks he has the definitive answer.
- Surviving the Battle of Britain, World Cup and domestic violence
- Loneliness, school funding, same-sex divorce
Copyright free: The image is a drawn diagram from an academic at the OU
Uncertainty within the Realm of Statistics
Mathematician and tutor, Katie Chicot, questions the role of "certainty" within the realm of statistical data. She interviews Carol Calvert on the issue, following her talk entitled 'Data – love the uncertainty'.Read now ❯Uncertainty within the Realm of Statistics
Tony Hirst and Hans Rosling introduce us to visualising development data and explore bar charts, line charts and scatter graphs.Watch now ❯An introduction to visualising development data
Is there anything sinister in the statistics which appears to show left-handed people die before their time?Read now ❯Diary of a data sleuth: When the data you don't collect affects the data you do
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You might not realise it, but maths is an essential component of healthcare. In fact, sloppy calculations can have fatal consequences. This free course, Using numbers and handling data, is designed for those contemplating a future in the health services industry.Learn more ❯Using numbers and handling data
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Dr Katie Chicot, Senior Lecturer, Staff Tutor in Mathematics & Statistics
Katie Chicot researches infinite combinatorial structures.
Katie completed her PhD in mathematics at the University of Leeds. Desiring to bring the beauty and clarity of mathematics to a broader audience Katie became the Clothworkers’ Fellow in Mathematics at the Royal Institution. Soon after she became an Associate Lecturer with the Open University and then a Staff Tutor.
Katie is involved in many projects which bring maths to the public and schools. She is a Holgate Lecturer with the London Mathematical Society and serves on the council of the UK Mathematics Trust.
Katie has an interest in gender in STEM and has been made resources that help women to return to STEM employment such as the short course Return to STEM.
Tackling mathematical problems and encouraging others to engage with mathematical investigations are the cornerstones of Katie’s work.