Rank #1: Immigrant Crime Rate in the US
Rank #2: 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)
Rank #3: Carbs, Sugar and the Truth
Rank #4: The spread of fact-checking in Africa
Rank #5: How many words do you need to speak a language?
Rank #6: WS More or Less: Does Sweden Really Have a Six Hour Day?
Rank #7: Teen Suicide; Brexit Business Moves; Wood-Burner Pollution
Rank #8: Getting Creative with Statistics
Rank #9: US election, stray cats and puzzles
Rank #10: WS MoreOrLess: Foreign Aid: More Harm Than Good?
Rank #11: WS MoreOrLess: Processed Meat and Cancer
Rank #12: WS MoreOrLess: Oil
Rank #13: 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
Rank #14: Selfies, sugar daddies and dodgy surveys
The second piece of questionable research comes from reports that a quarter of a million UK students are getting money from 'sugar daddies' they met online. The story came from a sugar daddy website. They claim around 225,000 students have registered with them and have met (mostly) men for what they call "mutually beneficial arrangements". We explain our doubts over the figures.
There were reports recently that there will more plastic in the ocean than fish by 2050. The report comes from The Ellen MacArthur Foundation. But, as we discover, there's something fishy about these figures.
Away from advertising, studies have shown that children born in the summer do not perform as well as children born earlier in the academic year. For this reason schools are being encouraged to be sympathetic to parents that want their summer-born children to start a year later. But what should parents do? Is this a good option? We speak to Claire Crawford, Assistant Professor of Economics at the University.
Gemma Tetlow from the Institute for Fiscal Studies explains how some areas of public spending having fallen to similar levels seen in 1948. She explains how spending has changed over time, and what might happen in the future.
And friend of the programme, Kevin McConway, explains some of the statistical words that non-statisticians do not understand.
Rank #15: Numbers of the Year 2015
Contributors include: Professor Jane Green, Helen Arney, Paul Lewis, Andrew Samson, Leonard Doyle , Peter Cunliffe-Jones, Farai Chideya, Claire Melamed and Professor John Allen Paulos.