Henriette Kolb: Why the widening gender gap is a wake-up call for us all

Global disparities between women and men have been narrowing for more than a decade, even if by small percentages. That makes the news from the World Economic Forum last week that the gender disparities have widened in 2017 all the more disappointing. It is a step back from global efforts toward achieving gender equality, and that hurts all of us. The World Economic Forum’s 2017 Global Gender Gap Report — which analyzes… Read more
sihlouette of a man's head and a woman's head facing each other with a tightrop running through both. Standing on the tightrope is a man, while hanging from the tightrope by one hand is a woman

Andrew Sayer: We need to challenge the myth that the rich are specially-talented wealth creators

In light of the news that the richest 80 people in the world have as much wealth as the poorest half of the world’s population, all 3.5 billion of them, and at the time of the plutocrats’ World Economic Forum in Davos, many people are talking about the extraordinary concentration of wealth at the top. Here in the UK, the combined wealth of the richest 1,000 people is £519 billion (up from $450 billion in 2013). That’s… Read more
Photo of Donald Trump and Martin Skreli side by side looking incredibly smug

Seeta Bhardwa: How can we fix the Oxbridge problem?

The apparent elitist nature of Oxbridge and other top universities has again come under scrutiny following the release of new research showing that numbers of black and minority ethnic (BME) and lower socio-economic students at the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge remain depressingly low. Figures obtained by a Freedom of Information request from the Labour MP David Lammy revealed that students… Read more
Cambridge green

Kevin Veale: Tactics for addressing Alt-Right ideologies in the classroom

Universities are generally understood to be bastions of independent thought and free-expression, which is exactly what they need to be. However, one of the realities that we need to take into account is that “freedom of speech,” “free expression” and other vitally important ideals are not and never have been evenly distributed within our society: the Guardian studied its own comments section and revealed… Read more
Meeting full of alt-right Pedro Frog characters.

Ruth Patrick: Inaccurate, exploitative, and very popular: the problem with ‘Poverty Porn’

Ongoing cuts to social security provision take place against a context in which ‘welfare’ is continually derided. The use of the Americanisation welfare rather than social security is itself a linguistic device that operates to narrow our analytical attention (and critique) onto a small proportion of beneficiaries: those in receipt of out-of-work state support. Focusing on the ‘problem’ with ‘welfare’… Read more
Family from The Estate, a tv show about a working class family that live on a Council estate.

Jessica Megarry: Why #metoo is an impoverished form of feminist activism, unlikely to spark social change

Using the hashtag #metoo, thousands of women around the world have posted on social media sharing their stories of male violence, particularly in the workplace. The posts are a response to the multiple accusations of sexual assault against film producer Harvey Weinstein, as women outside the film industry join in online to share their experiences of harassment, assault, and rape. As the stories continue to pile up,… Read more
#METOO and #BalanceTonPorc written on the palm of a woman's hand in black ink

Gallagher and Carling: Migrant smugglers are winning. Here’s why

Migrant smuggling: moving people across borders for profit, is reported to be one of the fastest-growing and most lucrative forms of organized criminal activity. Smugglers crowd their human cargo into shipping containers and onto boats and trucks. Many migrants arrive safely and consider the investment well spent. But migrant smuggling is a dirty business: excessive profiteering and exploitation routinely… Read more
Boatful of refugees in the Mediterranean

Anthony and Baldry: FactCheck Q&A: are Indigenous Australians the most incarcerated people on Earth?

Excerpt from Q&A, May 29, 2017. Quote begins at 1:49. We’ve made progress in the last 50 years but some of the profound indicators of our problems – children alienated from parents, the most incarcerated people on the planet Earth, and youths in great numbers in detention – obviously speak to a structural problem. – Cape York Partnership founder Noel Pearson, speaking on Q&A, May 29 2017 During a Q&A… Read more
Noel Pearson on Q&A

Cristine Russell: Confronting Sexual Harassment in Science

If anyone thought scientists were somehow different from ordinary people—nobler, more ethical, more pure—then events over the past two years have been a sharp wake-up call. As with just about any area of human endeavor where men hold the lion’s share of power, the world of science and technology is plagued by sexual harassment. Women in STEM fields have long known this, of course. But just as in Hollywood, where… Read more
A woman in a lab coat speaking into a megaphone

Luke Allen: Robert Mugabe as WHO goodwill ambassador – what went wrong?

At an international conference on non-communicable diseases, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the World Health Organisation director general, recently named Zimbabwe president, Robert Mugabe, as a new WHO “goodwill ambassador” on non-communicable diseases (NCDs) for Africa. Following international uproar the accolade was rescinded – but the debacle showed both misguided good intention and the importance… Read more