The Townsend Material Deprivation score was originally devised by Townsend et al (1988). It is based on the following four Census variables:
- Percent of households without access to a car (car)
- Percent of households with more than one person per room (ppr)
- Percent of households not owner-occupied (ten)
- Percent of individuals who are economically active unemployed (eau)
The four domains above are then combined to produce the overall Townsend Score. This score can be calculated for any geographical area that is available in the Census tables, for example LSOA, MSOA, Ward, LAD, etc.
Because of the way the score is combined, only the relative rank of the scores is meaningful. In practice, this means it is possible to say an area is more or less deprived than another, but not what ‘amount’ of deprivation it experiences. For this reason it is common to create a score based on a national dataset. This script uses data from England and Wales (Scotland and Northern Ireland tables were not available at the time of original publication (February 2014)). Thus, the scores reflect the relative deprivation of an area based on similar areas in England and Wales.
townsendr: Townsend Material Deprivation Score copyright © 2014-2016 Phil Mike Jones - orcid.org/0000-0001-5173-3245
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Thanks and acknowledgementsThanks to Robin Lovelace for having a once-over of the script and his suggestions.
- Office for National Statistics, 2011 Census: Aggregate data (England and Wales) [computer file]. Downloaded from: http://www.nomisweb.co.uk/census/2011 [Accessed February 2014]. This information is licensed under the terms of the Open Government Licence [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government-licence/version/2].
- Office for National Statistics, 2011 Census: Digitised Boundary Data (England and Wales) [computer file]. UK Data Service Census Support. Downloaded from: http://edina.ac.uk/census
- Townsend, Peter, Phillimore, Peter and Beattie, Alastair (1988) 'Health and Deprivation: Inequality and the North'. London: Croom Helm