Rank #1: Teen Suicide; Brexit Business Moves; Wood-Burner Pollution
Feb 08 2019
Rank #2: Hottest Easter, Insects, Scottish villages
A heatwave struck the UK over Easter – and in fact Easter Monday was declared the hottest on record in the UK. But listeners asked - is it that surprising that it was the warmest when the date fell so late in April? We crunch the numbers supplied by the Met Office.
Insects live all around us and if a recent scientific review is anything to go by, then they are on the path to extinction. The analysis found that more than 40% of insect species are decreasing and that a decline rate of 2.5% a year suggests they could disappear in 100 years. And as some headlines in February warned of the catastrophic collapse of nature, some More or Less listeners questioned the findings. Is insect life really in trouble?
Collecting income tax from the 1%
Recently Lord Sugar said in a Tweet “The fact is if you taxed everyone earning over £150k at a rate of 70% it would not raise enough to pay for 5% of the NHS.” Is that true? Helen Miller, Deputy Director and head of tax at the Institute for Fiscal Studies looks at how much such a policy might raise from the 1% of tax payers who earn over £150,000.
Where is Scotland’s highest village?
A battle is brewing in the Southern Scottish uplands between two rival villages. How can statistics help determine which village should take the crown? Wanlockhead and Leadhills both lay claim to the title of Scotland’s highest village but there can only be one winner. More or Less attempts to settle the age old dispute once and for all.
Image: A man and woman sitting on deckchairs on the beach
Credit: Getty Images
Apr 26 2019
Rank #3: How Richard Thaler changed Economics
Oct 13 2017
Rank #4: Covid-19 fatality rate
But the frustrating thing is: we’re still not sure. So how can we work this crucial number out?
May 09 2020
Rank #5: WS More or Less: How Should We Think About Spending?
(Photo: Mannequins in a shop window wearing sale t-shirts. Credit: Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
Apr 20 2018
Rank #6: Carbs, Sugar and the Truth
Aug 03 2018
Rank #7: Gender Pay Gap
This topic has been in the news this week after the Institute for Fiscal Studies published research showing women end up 33% worse off than their male counterparts after they have children. But earlier in the summer, Fraser Nelson wrote in the Telegraph that the pay gap is “no longer an issue” for women born after 1975. Can both assessments be true? And could the label “gender pay gap” be hindering our understanding of what really lies behind the numbers?
The cost of a hospital
If a politician or commentator wants to underline just how wasteful a piece of expenditure is, a common strategy is to compare it to the number of hospitals you could build instead. Of course, hospitals are positive things – we all want more, right? But just how much is a hospital? Is it really a useful unit of measurement? We speak to health economist John Appleby.
As Labour members begin voting on the party leadership, we investigate some of the claims made on the “Corbyn Facts” website set up by Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign. Did he really give 122 speeches on the EU referendum during the campaign? Were this year’s local election results as good as Labour’s best performance under Ed Miliband? We look at what the numbers tell us.
Death Penalty abolition
Statistics suggest that officially about half of the countries in the world have abolished Capital Punishment, and a further 52 have stopped its use in practice. But we tell the story behind the numbers and show why the picture is more complicated. We speak to Parvais Jabbar, co-director of the Death Penalty Project.
The Holiday Desk of Good News
This week we outline a handful of statistics to make everyone feel better about the UK and their holidays.
Aug 26 2016
Rank #8: Testing truth, fatality rates, obesity risk and trampolines.
The question of just how dangerous the new coronavirus really is, is absolutely crucial. If it’s high, there could be dreadful consequences if we relaxed the lockdowns. So why is the fatality rate so difficult to calculate?
Is it true that being obese makes Covid-19 ten times more dangerous? And whatis injuring more kids in lockdown, trampolines or Joe Wicks’ exercises?
May 06 2020
Rank #9: Reducing your risk of death
The second statistic claims that even a minimal amount of running is linked to reducing your risk of premature death by up to 30%. Ruth Alexander finds out what’s behind these numbers and we hear from epidemiologist, Gideon Meyerowitz-Katz.
Producer: Darin Graham
Nov 09 2019
Rank #10: Economics of Overbooking
Apr 14 2017
Rank #11: WS More or Less: Should we really be drinking eight glasses of water a day?
(Image: Hand holding a glass of water. Credit: Charlotte Ball/PA Wire)
Jan 06 2017
Rank #12: The Simpsons and maths
Dec 20 2019
Rank #13: Tax, speed dating and sea ice
May 19 2017
Rank #14: WS More or Less: Exposing the biases we have of the world
May 07 2018
Rank #15: Is nuclear power actually safer than you think?
But we wondered how deadly nuclear power is overall when compared to other energy sources? Dr Hannah Ritchie of the University of Oxford joins Charlotte McDonald to explore.
Image:Chernobyl nuclear plant, October 1st 1986
Credit: Getty Images
Jun 28 2019
Rank #16: How many words do you need to speak a language?
Jun 22 2018
Rank #17: Questioning the Chernobyl disaster death count
Image: Chernobyl nuclear power plant a few weeks after the disaster.
Credit: Getty Images
Jun 21 2019
Rank #18: Are married women flipping miserable?
Jun 07 2019
Rank #19: Climate Change, Victorian Diseases, Alcohol
Feb 15 2019