The Centre was established in 1983 by Professor Sir Adrian Webb. From its inception, the Centre has conducted applied research across the field of social policy – increasing understanding of the nature and causes of social problems; evaluating social and economic policies; supporting policy decision making with current and comprehensive data; and promoting interactions between policy makers, practitioners, and the research community.
CRSP has built an international reputation for high-quality work on a range of issues, including the influential Minimum Income Standard (MIS). Funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF), MIS is used to set the Real Living Wage in the UK. It underpins the Retirement Living Standards (RLS), and is used by a variety of organisations to tackle issues around poverty, living standards and income adequacy.
Since 2008, MIS has been updated annually and the approach has been replicated internationally to establish benchmarks for acceptable household income levels in other countries. In the midst of an ongoing cost-of-living crisis, with so many households struggling to meet their needs, CRSP’s work has never been more vital.