Motherhood in Western Europe

Insights from Western European Mothers

The changing face of motherhood — Western Europe

The accompanying reports combine a review of existing literature with an analysis of original quantitative data derived from a poll of 9,582 mothers from 12 countries in Western Europe, making it one of the largest studies of this kind ever conducted

Child Obesity and Health

An analysis of the latest available data from the Health Survey for England (HSE)

Child Obesity and Health — download the full report in pdf format

In this ‘National Childhood Obesity Week’, the SIRC report, Children, obesity and heath: Recent trends, holds up a true mirror, accurately reflecting the trend towards slimmer, healthier children. more

The Future of Freemasonry

An examination of the role of Freemasonry in the 21st century


This report is, as far as we know, an account of the first ever study that has been commissioned by Freemasons from a non-Masonic body. None of the SIRC members involved in the project are Freemasons, a fact that evoked surprise and welcome in equal measure from the Lodge members we met. more

The Changing Face of Motherhood

Insights from three generations of mothers


The report seeks to answer some specific questions about the changing face of motherhood and determine the extent to which modern ‘solutions’ to motherhood are more or less beneficial than the solutions of the past. more

Naming and Praising Awards – April 2002

SIRC Naming and Praising Awards go to James Meikle at the Guardian and David Derbyshire at the Telegraph for their calm, responsible coverage of the recent 'Parkinson's breakthrough' story. Meikle managed to get the main caveat into the very first sentence of his story, while Derbyshire devoted most of the third and fourth sentences to important ifs and buts. In neither case did this responsible approach detract from the interest or impact of the news, but Parkinson's sufferers and their relatives reading Meikle's and Derbyshire's accounts will not have false hopes cruelly raised by expectations of a 'miracle cure'.

These journalists prove that the advice in the SIRC/RS/RI Guidelines – to mention any caveats in the first few lines of any report on a potential health benefit or risk – can be followed without detriment to the news value of the story.

It is perhaps no accident that these stories were written by their papers' health and science correspondents, while the Independent relied on a PA News text, which failed to mention any caveats until the very last lines, and the Sun gave us the predictably irresponsible "Docs hail miracle cure" headline, again leaving a brief mention of the fact that it will be years before any treatment is available to the very end of the report.

22 April 2002