NEWS11 July 2014

Scarlett Epstein memorial

News UK

UK — A celebration of the life of Scarlett Epstein, one of the pioneers of development research, is taking place at the University of Sussex on Sunday ( 13th July).

Epstein was born Trude Grünwald in 1922 in Vienna. She became a Jewish refugee, escaping Hitler’s annexation of Austria, and eventually settling in England in 1939. She wrote about her experiences in her autobiography Swimming Upstream. She went on to study economics and political science before completing a Ph.D in economics, involving field work in India, under the supervision of Max Gluckman the anthropologist. She met and married Bill Epstein during this period.

Over the course of the rest of her life she continued with field studies in India and Papua New Guinea (PNG), publishing 14 books and more than 50 articles on her action research. She believed the techniques developed by professional market research combined with the skills and tools of marketing could promote better health, real development and the alleviation of poverty, for which she campaigned.

Epstein was awarded an OBE in 2004 for ‘services rendered to rural and women’s development especially in PNG’. She died in April at the age of 91.

Her memorial starts at 2.30pm at the Meeting House at Sussex University, Falmer, Brighton, BN1 9QF.