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Subject:

'Statistics and Social Nuisance' Seminars: Joint RSS GAS and EM local group seminars on 11 May 2005

From:

William Browne <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

William Browne <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Mon, 9 May 2005 09:36:49 +0100

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Dear All,
 This Wednesday 11th May 2005 the University of Nottingham will be hosting a joint meeting of the General Applications section and the local group of the RSS on the theme of 'Statistics and Social Nuisance' between 2pm and 5pm. The afternoon meeting will contain 3 related talks and will be held in the Maths/Physics building in room C4.  A campus map is available at http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/includes/maps/up-map.pdf (The M/P building is number 22 on the map.)  All are welcome.

The programme is as follows: 

2pm Adrian Davis, University of Manchester 
Dilemmas in assessing the impact of noise on young people 

Abstract
Noise exposure remains one of the most preventable risk factors for acquiring permanent hearing damage. Once the ear has been damaged and cochlea hair cells die there can be no regeneration, so therefore reduction of risk factors is by far the best approach. To understand how we assess the impact of noise in young people we have to understand the relationship between age, noise and hearing. Hearing threshold levels (varying from -20 to 120 dB HL) are the usual way in which we characterise hearing. These thresholds get progressively worse as we grow older and the high frequencies are more vulnerable to all forms of insult. Noise affects the high frequencies first and may spread out its effect from there to adjacent frequencies. Occupational noise exposure has been the major source of noise induced hearing loss. Gunfire has played its part eg gunners in WW2. Social noise used to be restricted to racing motorbikes or lawn mowers. Now social noise means pubs, clubs, discos and concerts. In twenty years social noise at the level of occupational hazard has risen hugely. Our studies of random people in Nottingham in the late 1990s shows that there is a large increased risk (and a major one is for professionals working in the environment of constant noise above 85dBA). Everyone thinks that the hearing in these young people should be worse than in a control group of similar SEG. This is less easy to demonstrate than it seems. Why should this be? Are those who enjoy loud social activities fundamentally fitter, or do they have a better starting point in the nursery. The major element in the data is the huge variability. Those with most noise exposure are in best for age categories and can be in the worst. We have a couple of longitudinal studies that address some of these issues. An ongoing study that is being carried out in Nottingham (Melanie Ferguson), Southampton (Mark Lutman) and Manchester is exploring the issues concerning the impact that regulations and best practice have on damage to hearing. The results are very interesting so far and show differences using very new techniques between the young people who work in the noise compared to no noise jobs. But there is an awesome amount left to do! 

2.55pm Andy Jones, University of East Anglia 
Exposure to Environmental urban noise pollution in Birmingham, UK 

Abstract
This talk examines the extent to which inequalities in noise exposure are present in the city of Birmingham in the English midlands. Estimates of road and rail noise levels were made using established sound propagation models and were combined with data on noise generated from the city's airport. Demographic details from the 1991 UK Census provided information on population age, ethnic makeup, and deprivation. No relationship was established between noise exposure and population age, and there was only rather weak evidence of an association between noise exposure and ethnicity. Similarly weak disparities were observed in estimated noise exposures and levels of socio-economic deprivation. The implications of these findings with regard to possible efforts to reduce urban noise levels are discussed. 

3.45pm - 4.15pm Coffee in room C10

4.15pm Gavin Shaddick, University of Bath 
Using a probabilistic model (pCNEM) to estimate personal exposure to air pollution 
(Joint work with James Videk, Rick White, Jean Meloche and Chris Chatfield) 

Abstract
This talk will describe the use of a probabilistic model to estimate personal exposures to airborne pollutants. Such estimates are important when assessing, for example, the potential effects of air pollution on health and in developing related policy. An individual's personal exposure will be determined by local pollution sources which will change throughout the day at the individual's location changes. For this reason, models have been developed that utilise 'time activity' patterns to compute the overall exposure to pollutants. This talk demonstrates the construction of such a model, for predicting exposure to PM10 of random selected individuals from sub-populations of Greater London. A case-study of working females in the spring and summer of 1997 is presented. 

For further details please E-mail me directly,
  Bill Browne.

Dr William Browne                   work phone : (0115) 9514940 
Lecturer in Statistics                home phone : (0115) 9392239
Mathematical Sciences           mobile : (0779) 1577701 
University of Nottingham          
University Park                        E-mail : [log in to unmask] 
Nottingham NG7 2RD 
web: http://www.maths.nott.ac.uk/htbin-local/staff.info?pmzwjb 
web (MLwiN): http://multilevel.ioe.ac.uk/ 
web (Publ.): http://www.maths.nott.ac.uk/personal/pmzwjb/bill.html

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