chapter  7
A Conceptual History of Policy Analysis
Pages 12

The first real social statistician was Adolphe Quetelet (1796-1874) who collected data on the Netherlands in the 1820s. Unlike Marx and Comte, whose data collection was unsystematic, Quetelet collected his facts in an orderly progression and then created generalizations about social conditions in the Netherlands. Soon afterward Quetelet moved to London, where he tutored Prince Albert and helped found the Statistical Society. Prince Albert later became a patron of the society, which changed its name to the Royal Statistical Society. This society sponsored research projects and served as an inspiration for the social reformers of England. Some of the work was, by our standards, rather laughable. Henry Mayhew, who conducted studies on London’s poor in 1851, was so misled by the effects of poor nutrition, miserable sanitation, and filth that he concluded that the street people of his day were of a different race than the rest of Anglo-Saxon England (Glazer, 1959, p. 56)!