Morag Treanor

Morag Treanor
Dr Morag Treanor
Lecturer in Social Policy; Programme Director MSc Social Research; Social Policy Research Convenor
Social PolicySchool of Social and Political ScienceUniversity of Edinburgh
2.25 Chrystal Macmillan Building 15a George Square Edinburgh UK EH8 9LD
+44 (0)131 650 3918
Research Interests
Social Inequality, Subjective well-being, Social statistics, child poverty, family poverty, child development, Social capital, Family relationships, Education, Quantitative Methods, Qualitative Research Methods

Guidance and Feedback Hours

  • Wednesdays 11.30 am - 1.00 pm or by appointment.

Personal website:

Biographical statement

Morag is a lecturer in social policy, part of the Nuffield funded Q-Step programme to promote a step-change in quantitative social science training. 


Her research uses longitudinal methods, both quantitative and qualitative, to explore the impacts of poverty and persistently low income on children's wellbeing and educational transitions. Her research also focuses on the impact of family, peer and social relations on child and maternal wellbeing for those living with low income. Her quantitative research uses birth cohort data, mainly the Growing Up in Scotland study, as well as the Millennium Cohort Study data and Understanding Society. She is presently conducting longitudinal qualitative research with families affected by Welfare Reform with the Child Poverty Action Group in Scotland called the Early Warning System. Morag is a member of the  Expert Advisory Group for the Child Poverty Action Group in Scotland. 

Her qualitative research has led to high impact work with local authorities and community planning partnerships on preventing and mitigating child poverty at the local level, and with the Educational Institute for Scotland (EIS) on the costs of the school day and children's participation and experience within schools and education for those on a low income. The EIS and CPAG recently produced a short film on the costs of the school day in collaboration with Morag called 'School Costs'.


Morag co-convenes the cross-school undergraduate course 'Social Policy and Society' (SCPL08004). She is also the convener of the Social Policy with Quantitative Methods course 'Introduction to Statistics for Social Science' and the annual 'Conversion course' held in May/June each year. This allows first year students to transfer their social science degree programme to one that includes quantitative methods (statistics).

She co-teaches on the 'Mathematics for Social Science' and 'Social Inequality and Social Protection' courses convened by Dr Valeria Skafida; 'Listening to Children' postgraduate course; 'Social Inequality across the Lifecourse' convened by Dr Alison Koslowski; and Social Policy Enquiry convened by Professor Lindsay Paterson.

Morag is the Programme Director of the MSc in Social Research.

In January 2016 Morag was awarded an Edinburgh Teaching Award (Level 3) and Senior Fellowship of the UK Higher Education Academy.


Journal articles

Treanor, Morag C. (2016) 'The effects of financial vulnerability and mothers’ emotional distress on child social, emotional and behavioural wellbeing: a structural equation modelSociology Vol 50, Issue 4, pp. 673–694

Treanor, Morag C. (2016) 'Social assets, low income and child social and emotional and behavioural wellbeingJournal of Families, Relationships and Societies, Volume 5, Number 2,  pp. 209-228(20)

Frank, J., Bromley, C., Doi, L., Estrade, M. Jepson, R., McAteer, J., Robertson, T., Treanor, M. C. and Williams, A. (2015) ‘Seven Key Investments for Health Equity across the Lifecourse: Scotland versus the rest of the UKSocial Science & Medicine, Volume 140, pp. 136–146

Treanor, Morag C. (2015) 'Helping to alleviate child poverty' Children in Scotland, Issue 160, Winter 2104/15 

Treanor, Morag C. (2014) ‘Deprived or not deprived? Comparing the measured extent of material deprivation using the UK government’s and the Poverty and Social Exclusion surveys’ method of calculating material deprivationQuality & Quantity, vol. 48 (3):1337-1346.

Skafida, V & Treanor, M (2014) ‘Do changes in objective and subjective family income predict change in children's diets over time? Unique insights using a longitudinal cohort study and fixed effects analysis’ Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, vol. 68 (6): 534-41.

Book Chapters

Treanor, Morag C. (forthcoming) What it feels like to live in poverty. In CPAG (eds) Poverty: The Facts. CPAG: London

Treanor, Morag C. (forthcoming) Income poverty, material deprivation and lone-parenthood. In Nieuwenhuis, R. and Maldonado, L. (eds.) The Triple Bind of Lone Parents. Policy Press: Bristol.

Reports and briefing papers

Treanor, Morag C. (2017) Actions to prevent and mitigate child poverty in South Ayrshire Community Planning Partnership, Edinburgh: What Works Scotland.

Treanor, Morag C. (2017) Actions to prevent and mitigate child poverty at the local level – briefing paper, What Works Scotland,

Treanor, Morag C. (2016), A ‘pockets’ approach to addressing financial vulnerability, Centre for Research on Families and Relationships (CRFR) Research briefing 83, in collaboration with the Glasgow Centre for Population Health

Treanor, Morag C. (2016), Social assets, low income and child wellbeing, Centre for Research on Families and Relationships (CRFR) Research briefing 82

Treanor, Morag C. (2016), Financial vulnerability, mothers’ emotional distress and child wellbeing, Centre for Research on Families and Relationships (CRFR) Research briefing 81

Treanor, Morag C. (2015), Health and wellbeing, Child Poverty Action Group: Glasgow

Treanor, Morag C. (2015), Problems with the benefits system, Child Poverty Action Group: Glasgow

Treanor, Morag C. (2015), Education (including school costs), Child Poverty Action Group: Glasgow

Treanor, Morag C. (2015), Managing on current income, Child Poverty Action Group: Glasgow

Treanor, Morag C. (2015), Barriers to employment, Child Poverty Action Group: Glasgow

Treanor, Morag C. (2015), Public services, Child Poverty Action Group: Glasgow

Treanor, Morag C. (2015), Devolved issues, Child Poverty Action Group: Glasgow

Treanor, Morag C. (2014), Free education for poor mums may help alleviate child poverty, The Conversation

Treanor, Morag C. (2014) Book review: Gerry Mooney and Gill Scott, eds., Social Justice and Social Policy in Scotland. Bristol: The Policy Press, 2012. International Review of Scottish Studies, vol. 39 (2014): 175-177.

Treanor, Morag C. (2012),  Consultation response to the Conservative-led coalition government’s 2012 consultation on a new measure of child poverty

Treanor, Morag C. (2012), The impacts of poverty on children’s outcomes Scottish Child Care and Protection Network (SCCPN): Stirling 

Harris, J. Treanor, M. C. and Sharma, N. Below the Breadline Barnardo’s: London (2009) 

Bryan, R. Treanor, M. and Hill, M. (2007) Evaluation of Pilots to Improve Primary to Secondary School Transitions Scottish Executive Social Research: Edinburgh 


'Addressing vulnerability by putting cash in mums’ pockets', Guest Blog for the Glasgow Centre for Population Health, 2016.

'Recent changes to measuring child poverty', Challenge Poverty Week, 2015.

'Routes out of poverty: education and social mobility', Challenge Poverty Week, 2014.

Reposted by the Centre for Research on Families and Relationships (CRFR): 

Consultation response to the Conservative-led coalition government’s 2012 consultation on a new measure of child poverty

Blog on the child poverty consultation:


Topics interested in supervising

Morag would be interested in supervising PhD students in relation to social and economic inequalities, poverty, child poverty, family poverty, family relationships, children's cognitive, social, emotional and behavioural development, poverty and education, social mobility and other related subjects. She works principally with quantitative methods but have a strong mixed-methods background so would be happy to supervise projects with a qualitative element. She is also highly experienced in conducting qualitative research with vulnerable groups such as children, families living in poverty and families accessing support services.

If you are interested in being supervised by Morag Treanor, please see the links below for more information:

PhD in Social Policy; PhD in Sociology