Monday, 13 April 2015

From Delusion to Reality

The Church of England published the findings of the Church Growth Research Programme (2011-2013) in the report 'From Anecdote to Evidence'.

I have written a paper  'From Delusion to Reality' which evaluates the report.

It looks at how accurately 'From Anecdote to Evidence' reflects the research carried out by David Voas and his team at the University of Essex. Their full report is available here.

The differences are alarming. My paper shows that 'From Anecdote to Evidence' systematically misrepresents or misinterprets the underlying report by David Voas & Laura Watt, thereby exaggerating the usefulness of the findings for numerical growth.

This has implications for the 'Reform & Renewal' programme (involving many Task Groups) which plans to borrow an estimated £100m from the future, on the evidence of this research, to invest in church growth.

Read the full paper here.

(Slightly modified version to the paper - a name correction - at 13.20pm 13/4/15.)


  1. Thanks for blogging - will follow with interest.

  2. Thanks Mark. Very helpful especially in our (NZ) context where it A2E has been received uncritically and policies developed from it. Glad to see your knives are kept sharp :-)

    1. Thanks Eric. Good to hear from you. And v interesting to hear AtoE has been adopted in NZ also.