On Thursday 22 October 2020, the Departments of Health Policy and Social Policy hosted a celebration of Professor John Stewart’s recent biography of Richard Titmuss, A Commitment to Welfare.
Having joined LSE in 1950, Richard Titmuss was a pioneer of social policy research and an influential figure in Britain’s post-war welfare debates. He almost single-handedly created the academic field of social administration and wrote extensively on health, inequalities and other welfare issues, which have again come to the fore in the COVID-19 pandemic.
It was fitting, then, that this event formed part of LSE’s “Shaping the Post-COVID World” series, a platform for the debate about the direction the world could and should be taking after this crisis and what policies national and global actors should pursue.
The event was chaired by Professor Julian Legrand with an introduction from Jon Ashworth MP, Shadow Secretary of State for Health and Social Care. Jon reflected on the continuing relevance of Richard Titmuss’s influence on health policymaking and his values as a Labour politician.
Following this, Professor John Stewart, Professor Lucinda Platt and Dr Sara Machado discussed Titmuss’ life, altruism, and his commitment to reducing the gap between richer and poorer.
This video of the event is on YouTube and a podcast is available to download via LSE Player at A Commitment to Welfare: the impact of Richard Titmuss on health and social policy.