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    The EPC's vision is to close the gap between economic policy and knowledge. Ultimately it brings together economic opinion formers - in academia, business, the media and government - in new and innovative ways.

  • Crime per Hectare – a new metric for subscribers

    July 16th, 2016

    UKCrimeStats is excited to now offer subscribers a new metric – Crime per Hectare. To explain;

    In the history of crime statistics. First came total crime per given area. The shortcoming of this were that areas varied hugely in size and population.

    Then came crime rate – a way of deflating the impact of crime relative to the size of population. This too can vary quite a bit because people don’t stay still and residential and daytime populations particularly in City Centres are hugely different.

    Now we have a new metric that allows you to compare any geospatial shape of any size against another – crime per hectare. We have taken care to capture all surface area calculations so that every area, not matter how large or small can be compared by crime per hectare. Right now this is available on Postcode Sectors, Postcode Districts, Lower and Middle Super Output Areas – we will roll it out across everything shortly.

    A further iteration we are also working at is Crime Rate per Hectare which should more or less cover all iterations – area, population and total – watch this space.




    Article source: http://ukcrimestats.com/blog/2016/07/16/crime-per-hectare-a-new-metric-for-subscribers/

    Now with Postcode-matched National Property Price Rankings

    June 27th, 2016

    Understanding how one area in crime and property pricing compares to another only takes you so far. For a decent overview, you need to understand where that crime level and those property prices compare at a national level. We now show this on UKCrimeStats.

    Take this random generated postcode DE738JU – just type this or any other postcode for England and Wales into the seardh box and it will take you to a page like this


    Which will tell you with a percentile ranking, the average sale price and number of sales over the last 24 months, how that compares nationwide with the other 33,000 lower layer super output areas which the postcode has been matched to.

    Some other work I do at the Institute of Directors, particularly on broadband convinced me that there was a tremendous case for investing in ultrafast broadband to connect up these much cheaper areas of the country to live in. The next decade promises self-driving cars, virtual and enhanced reality presence, the internet of things, cargo-carrying drones and above all, cloud-based services and remote education in abundance. When this happens, I wouldn’t be completely surprised if we start to see a reverse to urban scaling and people choosing to live and work further out from city centres where rents have become stratospheric.




    Article source: http://ukcrimestats.com/blog/2016/06/27/now-with-postcode-matched-national-property-price-rankings/

    Why UKCrimeStats tells you so much about your postcode . . .

    June 13th, 2016

    We’re always adding features to UKCrimeStats – here’s another one. I would immodestly suggest that for individual postcodes, this is one of the best sources of data there is. So with a random generated postcode, here is an example of what each page offers;


    1. Population
    2. Males
    3. Females
    4. Households
    5. Links to energy data for the area
    6. Matching Neighbourhood, Constituency/MP, Subdivisions, Matching Postcode district, Postcode sector, Police Force, LSOA,  MSOA, Workzone, Neighbourhood Police Officers
    7. Links to Matching property sales by all the above
    8. A map of the area
    9. Radius crime calculations for 1, 0.5 and 0.25 miles around the postcode unit with adjustable charts and tables to reflect that
    10. A postcode percentile ranking where 100 equals highest and 0 equals lowest to compare to the rest of the country
    11. And now . . . All historic property transactions dating back to January 1995



    Article source: http://ukcrimestats.com/blog/2016/06/13/why-ukcrimestats-tells-you-so-much-about-your-postcode/

    Updated to end April 2016 for Crime and Property

    June 11th, 2016

    You can see by the way the effect that the budget had on the last minute increase in property transactions to avoid stamp duty in March 2016 – the highest volume of transactions since November 2007 at 104,000 across England and Wales. Not sure that’s a good harbinger for the economy as last time transactions were that high, we were just starting to tip into a major recession …


    Article source: http://ukcrimestats.com/blog/2016/06/11/updated-to-end-april-2016-for-crime-and-property/

    Postcode areas, districts and sectors now with mapped shapes

    June 11th, 2016

    I’ve always found postcodes a bit vague and have preferred shapes like lower layer super output areas. The thing is, no one thinks in terms of the latter, especially those who should like the insurance industry, so we have just done a major upgrade to show visually on our maps – a close estimate – of where postcode districts and and sectors start and stop. Have a look at these pages and click on the relevant links to see what I mean;

    Postcode areas – e.g. SW

    Postcode districts – e.g. CR0

    Postcode sectors – e.g. SS1 2


    Article source: http://ukcrimestats.com/blog/2016/06/11/postcode-areas-districts-and-sectors-now-with-mapped-shapes/

    Guest Post by Quentin Hanley: Crime, Property, and Population Density

    April 22nd, 2016

    A wide range of indicators like wages, patents, and RD employment increase with the population of cities. This behaviour is often referred to as urban scaling. The interesting aspect of urban scaling is that it does not follow a straight line, but rather increases exponentially. This acceleration is similar to compound interest. In some cases, the compounding can be dramatic.  For example, GDP in European Cities  would be expected to increase by a factor of 18.2 when population increases by a factor of 10 and by 331(!) when population increases 100-fold. People are over 3 times as productive in the larger city. Imagine a bank offering 2% interest on £1, 6% interest on £100, 18% on £10,000, and so forth. This is why cities are economic engines. This data suggests that simply moving people from a small city to a larger one would result in a net rise in GDP. In other cases, cities provide economy of scale. Fewer petrol stations are required per person in larger cities.

    Unfortunately, crime, like GDP, accelerates in cities.

    Recently, Dan Lewis, Haroldo Ribiero, and I revisited some of these issues using the crime and property information available on UKCrimeStats. The degree of resolution available in the population, crime, and property data in the UK and collated and made available on UKCrimeStats allowed us to look beyond cities to all areas of England and Wales.

    We were interested in a number of things. Usually it is assumed that urban scaling is uniform and does not show different behaviour at different scales. Using the bank account analogy, does the rate of compounding go on forever, or are there limits.  Are there thresholds above which the rate of increase changes? Perhaps small population centres behave differently from larger ones.  With the data available, we could look at the entirety of England and Wales and not just the cities. We decided to start by dividing the region made up of England and Wales by Parliamentary Constituencies.

    What we found ranged from very intuitive to puzzling. Let’s begin with the intuitive parts. It is not so much cities that seem to be responsible for scaling behaviour but population density. This makes sense. Take burglary which is shown in the graph below. A potential burglar in a region where the only house is their own and it is 20 miles to the next dwelling is going to have few opportunities. In a densely settled area, where there are thousands of houses within walking distance there are many more opportunities.


    Another intuitive result involves detached houses. Detached houses, like petrol stations are subject to economies of scale at lower population densities. Above a density of about 16 people per hectare, the total value of transactions in detached housing drops. This makes sense. Large numbers of detached houses are not sustainable as population density increases. For example, 10 people living on a hectare will find themselves in very nice homes with up to 1000 square meters each. 100 people on a hectare will be more crowded with 100 square meters each. Increase the density to 1000 and each person has only 10 square meters. This has left no room for roads, shops, factories, and parks. A detached home in a high density area would require exceptional value to keep the land from being converted to higher density uses. An interesting aspect of the detached housing result was that the scaling was clearly non-uniform. A single scaling relationship could not explain everything.

    Less intuitive were the varying behaviours of different types of crime. Above a threshold density of 20 people per hectare Robbery increased enormously. Below the threshold, Robbery increased by a factor of 35 for a 10-fold increase in population density. However, above the threshold the factor increased from 35 to 130(!). On the other hand, shoplifting increases more rapidly below a threshold of 30 people per hectare than above. Finally, a single uniform scaling law was seen for burglary.

    Put another way, crime always increased with population density. One hundred people living on a single hectare will result in more crimes reported than 100 people living on 1000 hectares. A robber particularly loves a densely populated city where a shoplifter feels slightly inhibited. For a burglar a single behaviour applies to all areas.

    This is an overview of our findings. If you are interested in the study, the paper may be found here and some of details on the background may be found here.


    Article source: http://ukcrimestats.com/blog/2016/04/22/guest-post-by-quentin-hanley-crime-property-and-population-density/

    Property prices now updated to February 2016 – and a look at London

    April 5th, 2016

    We have just updated the latest price paid data from the Land Registry and matched it to every shape so you can run reports and compare areas and prices over different time periods as well as geolocate specific properties.

    One of the areas I’ve been watching closely is London – full page of sales here. As this chart shows which I’ve compiled, the declining trend number of new properties build and sold in London versus the rising population is very likely a contributing factor to the declining affordability of living in London.






    Article source: http://ukcrimestats.com/blog/2016/04/05/property-prices-now-updated-to-february-2016-and-a-look-at-london/

    Daytime and Residential Crime Rate Calcs now available for NI Super Output Areas

    April 2nd, 2016

    One of the unique capabilities of UKCrimeStats is the ability to ask of the data, which type of area, across the given area had the most, least, biggest increase/decrease, of this that or all types of crime weighted for daytime or residential population. We can do this with almost everything where the data is available. So we can now announce that this reporting facility has just added Northern Ireland Super Output Areas (NISOAs – equivalent of Lower Layer Super Output Areas). I was just looking at where the lowest residential crime rate area is in NI and the answer was Ardboe, half of which covers Lough Neagh and is a very large NISOA at over 2,000 hectares.  At the other end of the scale is Shaftsbury_1 which unsurprisingly is right in Belfast City Centre with a much smaller geographic footprint of 113 hectares.

    This however does not tell the whole story because the daytime population of Shaftsbury_1 is nearly 15 times higher than the residential one, at 32,000. City centres have much higher footfalls and you have to adjust for that. And we can.

    So now weighted for daytime population, which NISOA and lowest and highest crime rate over the last 12 months?

    The highest is Botanic_3 at 584.967 and the lowest is Rostulla_2 at 6.232 crimes and ASB incidents per 1,000 daytime population. If there’s one stand-out difference, it is that Botanic 3 is just 17 hectares.

    I often wonder if urban planners in their quest for greater urban density are considering enough the impact that density may have on overall crime rates.


    Article source: http://ukcrimestats.com/blog/2016/04/02/daytime-and-residential-crime-rate-calcs-now-available-for-ni-super-output-areas/