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Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation (WIMD)

Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation (WIMD)

Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation (WIMD)

Communities First areas were selected through a statistical measure called the Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation.

WIMD 2000

The initial Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation (WIMD) was published in August 2000, replacing the existing Welsh Index of Socio-Economic Conditions but using the same 1991 Census data. It consisted of six domains, or factors deemed to indicate deprivation:

  • Income
  • Employment
  • Health
  • Education
  • Housing
  • Geographic access to services

Data was collated for all 865 Electoral Divisions in Wales, which were then given comparative rankings, both for each individual domain and also combined across all domains

From this a subset of data deemed relevant to child poverty was also used to create a Child Poverty Index.

The top 100 wards in Wales were chosen to be part of the Welsh Assembly Governments Communities First programme.

The WIMD 2000 rankings for Communities First wards and all wards in Neath Port Talbot are available to download below.


WIMD 2005

Following consultation on the previous index, a new, revised WIMD was released in November 2005. The updated index included an additional domain – Environment; and the geographical units used were LSOA’s rather than electoral divisions (wards). Due to issues with available data a child index was not produced in 2005.

LSOAs falling within the top 10% most deprived of the index that were not already part of the programme were invited to apply for Communities First status in August 2006. In Neath Port Talbot this led to two Communities First partnerships expanding to cover larger areas (Sandfields and Brynbryddan & Penllyn) and the creation of two new partnerships (Neath South/Cimla and Neath Town Centre).

The WIMD 2005 rankings for Neath Port Talbot LSOA’s, and ward summaries are available to download below.


WIMD 2008

The 2008 WIMD was published in July 2008. The geography of the index remained LSOA’s, but changes included the addition of a Community Safety domain as well as new and amended indicators for some of the existing domains.

An updated Child Poverty Index was also developed using the WIMD 2008 data.

The WIMD 2008 rankings for Neath Port Talbot LSOA’s are available to download below.


WIMD 2011

The most recent WIMD was published on August 31st 2011. There were minor changes to some of the domains and their indicators. An updated Child Index was also developed using the WIMD 2011 data.

The WIMD 2011 rankings for Neath Port Talbot LSOA's are available to download below.


Using the Index

Comparison between different year’s indexes is tempting but it does not provide a valid measure of an LSOA’s improvement or otherwise. An areas ranking is affected by the scores of every other area; so IT IS IMPOSSIBLE to tell whether a change in score is a real change in the deprivation of an area, or whether it is a relative change due to the scores of other areas going up or down.

You can’t say how much more deprived one area is than another; the LSOA ranked 40th is not twice as deprived as the LSOA ranked 80th.

The index is based on the factors which mean an area is deprived not affluent. An area much lower down the ranked list than another is less deprived but you cannot say it is more affluent. Every area has people who are deprived and who are affluent, but the index counts only those classed as deprived.

The deprivation scores can’t be compared with those from other UK countries, as they are separate indexes with different indicators.

Lower Super Output Areas

Lower Super Output Areas (LSOA’s) are standard divisions used across Wales and England for collecting, aggregating and reporting statistics. There are 1,896 LSOA’s in Wales and 91 within Neath Port Talbot. The mean average population size of an LSOA is 1,500 people, with a minimum of 1,000. Using LSOA’s for the WIMD has a number of advantages:

Electoral divisions in Wales vary in size from around 1,000 to 20,000 people, whereas the more standard size of LSOA’s provides a better basis for comparison.

The boundaries of electoral divisions can change, which creates problems when comparing data from different time periods. LSOA boundaries will remain the same.

More information on LSOA’s and census geography is available from the Office for National Statistics website.