Life Chances (life + chance)

Distribution by Scientific Domains
Distribution within Humanities and Social Sciences

Selected Abstracts

Three Meanings of Intergenerational Mobility

ECONOMICA, Issue 272 2001
Dirk Van De Gaer
We axiomatize three different motivations for being concerned about intergenerational mobility: mobility as a description of movement, as an indication of equality of opportunity, and as an indication of equality of life chances. These three motivations are shown to be incompatible. None of the existing measures is acceptable as an indicator of equality of opportunity or equality of life chances. We propose two new measures of intergenerational mobility which more adequately reflect these concerns. [source]

Pathways of Youth Development in a Rural Trailer Park,

Katherine A. MacTavish
Abstract: Limited empirical documentation exists for the developmental pathways available to rural youth growing up in low-resource community settings. Drawing on ethnographic data, this article examines the developmental pathways experienced by youth in a rural trailer park. Findings reveal how various factors, some inherent to working poor class status and others unique to trailer park residence and small town community, challenge youth's access to a pathway offering broader life chances. [source]

Rural Youth Migration Trends in Australia: an Overview of Recent Trends and Two Inland Case Studies

Abstract Much of what has been written on the topic of Australian rural youth migration trends and processes has often proceeded from data-free, or data-poor grounds. In this context, this paper analyses recent trends in youth (15 to 24 years of age) migration for a temporally-consistent set of Statistical Divisions (SDs) in inland rural Australia, and for local government areas within the Northern Tablelands and Slopes and Ranges of northern New South Wales and the Western Australian Central Wheatbelt. The paper finds that rates of youth loss from rural regions have increased over the past twenty years. Yet the patterns, processes, causes and impacts of rural youth migration are distributed in a spatially-uneven fashion. Some remote areas are receiving net migration gains while booming ,sea change' coastal regions have experienced heavy losses. While the ,flight to the bright city lights' syndrome is evident, relatively high proportions of young people in the Northern SD of NSW move within their immediate region. Nevertheless, some common understandings concerning youth mobility were also confirmed. Gender differentials in migration propensity between women and men are evident even at quite local scales. Young people are also more likely to search out capital cities than the rest of the population. Most inland areas still continue to experience heavy losses of local youth. A more precise understanding of rural youth migration trends is an important stepping stone in the establishment of a reinvigorated research effort into young rural people's perspectives of their changing life chances in their home communities. [source]

,Like a friend going round': reducing the stigma attached to mental healthcare in rural communities

P. Crawford RMN DPSN BA (Hons) PhD
Abstract Traditionally, stigma is seen as something that is the fault of the mental health system, and that involves an individual suffering social disapprobation and reduced life chances as a result of having been given a diagnostic label and an identity as a patient as a result of their contact with psychiatric institutions. The present study, based on focus group discussions conducted with users and mental healthcare workers in a rural setting, suggests that this classic conception of stigma does not readily apply to care in the community. First, workers described themselves as actively trying to challenge stigma at an institutional level, as well as being apt to change their own practice to reduce the stigmatizing effect of mental healthcare on their clients and make their presence less conspicuous. The ideal was to be ,like a friend going round'. However, this view included a somewhat passive notion of clients. By contrast, the present investigation showed that clients described themselves in much more active terms as being aware of possible sources of stigma and being inclined to challenge negative attitudes themselves. Future mental healthcare practice could draw upon professionals' stock of knowledge as to how their practice could lead to less stigma and could build upon clients' own strengths to achieve stigma reduction. [source]

Race, Gender, and Class in the Persistence of the Mariel Stigma Twenty Years after the Exodus from Cuba

Gastón A. Fernández
The study examines the mediating effects of gender, race, and class in the Mariel Cuban immigrant adaptation process. It explores the significance of the Mariel identity by comparing the experiences of pre-1980 arrivals with those of the Mariel cohort (1980,1981) and post-Mariel arrivals (1982,1990, 1990,2000). The central question of the study is the extent to which the Marielitos' experience as a group with stigmatization and being labeled as "different" and pathological has persisted in having a different effect on their adaptation to the U.S. from that of other Cuban arrivals before and after Mariel. This study bases its definition of stigma on sociologically grounded theoretical orientation of the construction of a social identity in which a dominant group(s) attribute an undesired difference from what was anticipated to an out-group such that it leads to varieties of discrimination that reduce one's life chances. [source]

The transition from state care to adulthood: International examples of best practices

Carrie Reid
Youth who are moving out of state care require a number of important supports to aid in their successful transition to adulthood. Without these, they lack the proper tools and risk limited life chances. [source]

Production, Reproduction, and Education: Women, Children, and Work in a British Perspective

Heather Joshi
This article reviews findings of studies by the author and colleagues on relationships between women's work and the reproduction of the British population based on data for female birth cohorts 1922,70. The studies address three questions: (1) How do children affect women's paid work and lifetime earnings? (2) How does women's employment affect the quantity of children born? (3) How does women's employment affect the "quality" of children? The answers are affected by the woman's educational attainment. On question 1, childrearing may often halve lifetime earnings, but seldom for the well educated. By contrast, any effects from employment to childbearing are most apparent in the late motherhood of the well educated. Child quality, as assessed by indicators of child development, benefits from maternal education and suffers little from maternal employment. The economic advantages for children in dual-career families are thus unabated. A widening gulf between mothers will tend to polarize the life chances of their children, unless there are more options to combine employment and childrearing, especially including good-quality child care for those who cannot afford the market price. Education is a powerful influence, but does not alone solve all issues of equity, whether between families or between sexes. [source]

Equality of Opportunity and Differences in Social Circumstances

Andrew Mason
It is often supposed that the point of equality of opportunity is to create a level playing-field. This is understood in different ways, however. A common proposal is what I call the neutralization view: that people's social circumstances should not differentially affect their life chances in any serious way. I raise problems with this view, before developing an alternative conception of equal opportunity which allows some variations in social circumstances to create differences in life prospects. The meritocratic conception which I defend is grounded in the idea of respect for persons, and provides a less demanding interpretation of fair access to qualifications; it nevertheless places constraints on the behaviour of parents, and has implications for educational provision in schools. [source]

Developing a global approach to the theory and practice of young people leaving state care

John Pinkerton
ABSTRACT This paper argues that globalization, although needing to be recognized as a highly complex phenomenon and a contested concept, should become part of the debate about improving the life chances of young people leaving care. Understanding globalization is essential to developing the effective strategies of engagement and resistance needed to address the social exclusion of these young people. Consideration is given to the considerable difficulties faced in moving from that general recognition to a sufficiently nuanced view of the impact of globalization on care leaving required as the basis for action. Existing approaches to promoting international exchange and understanding are discussed and a conceptual model presented as the means to start the work of identifying how the needs of care leavers are assessed and met in different national contexts. It is suggested that by identifying patterns of cross-national similarities and differences, it will become possible to understand and to engage with the processes and institutions of globalization. An international theoretical and practice agenda are proposed appropriate to the present early stage in ensuring that globalization works for and not against the interests of care leavers. [source]

Effects of fully established Sure Start Local Programmes on 3-year-old children and their families living in England: a quasi-experimental observational study

Richard Reading
Effects of fully established Sure Start Local Programmes on 3-year-old children and their families living in England: a quasi-experimental observational study . MelhuishE., BelskyJ., LeylandA. H., BarnesJ. & the National Evaluation of Sure Start Research Team ( 2008 ) The Lancet , 372 , 1641 , 1647 . DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(08)61687-6 . Background Sure Start Local Programmes (SSLPs) are area-based interventions to improve services for young children and their families in deprived communities, promote health and development, and reduce inequalities. We therefore investigated whether SSLPs affect the well-being of 3-year-old children and their families. Methods In a quasi-experimental observational study, we compared 5883 3-year-old children and their families from 93 disadvantaged SSLP areas with 1879 3-year-old children and their families from 72 similarly deprived areas in England who took part in the Millennium Cohort Study. We studied 14 outcomes , children's immunizations, accidents, language development, positive and negative social behaviours and independence; parenting risk; home-learning environment; father's involvement; maternal smoking, body-mass index and life satisfaction; family's service use; and mother's rating of area. Findings After we controlled for background factors, we noted beneficial effects associated with the programmes for five of 14 outcomes. Children in the SSLP areas showed better social development than those in the non-SSLP areas, with more positive social behaviour (mean difference 0.45, 95% CI 0.09 to 0.80, P = 0.01) and greater independence (0.32, 0.18 to 0.47, P < 0.0001). Families in SSLP areas showed less negative parenting (,0.90, ,1.11 to ,0.69, P < 0.0001) and provided a better home-learning environment (1.30, 0.75 to 1.86, P < 0.0001). These families used more services for supporting child and family development than those not living in SSLP areas (0.98, 0.86 to 1.09, P < 0.0001). Effects of SSLPs seemed to apply to all subpopulations and SSLP areas. Interpretation Children and their families benefited from living in SSLP areas. The contrast between these and previous findings on the effect of SSLPs might indicate increased exposure to programmes that have become more effective. Early interventions can improve the life chances of young children living in deprived areas. [source]

The implications of US experiences with early childhood interventions for the UK Sure Start Programme

R. Gray
Abstract Background, The UK Government introduced a large-scale early childhood intervention programme, Sure Start, in 1999. Sure Start is to be further expanded, to achieve national coverage. US experience is highly relevant for anticipating challenges that this expansion will raise. Methods, This is a focused, narrative review. We examine the impact, funding, quality-improvement and programme objectives of Head Start and Early Head Start programmes. Results, (1) Early childhood interventions can make a significant difference to children's life chances; (2) expansion without adequate funding threatens quality; (3) narrower objectives, which are easier to measure, can crowd out broader objectives, which are difficult to measure; (4) programmes must balance fidelity to the model and flexibility to local conditions; (5) multiple objectives may conflict; and (6) programmes may have differential impacts. We consider the implications of these findings for Sure Start, focusing on funding, quality control and parental involvement. We also consider that the potential Sure Start should offer for tackling health inequalities in early childhood and suggest ways in which this aspect of the Programme could be enhanced. Conclusion, Head Start has been dogged by concerns about quality and effectiveness. Many of these problems stemmed from an over-hasty expansion, which locked the Programme into inadequate funding and uneven project- and staff-quality. These issues have been addressed through large funding increases and more rigorous performance measures. Nevertheless, concerns about the aims of the Programme and the extent of parental involvement in management remain. Current funding for Sure Start appears to be adequate, while systematic evaluation procedures have been built in from its inception. Concerns have been raised about the implications of expansion for funding, quality and for parental involvement in management of local programmes. US experience shows that these are centrally important issues and that, if they are not addressed early on, they can take many years to rectify. [source]

The impetus for family-centred early childhood intervention

B. Carpenter
Abstract In this article, the current climate of early intervention is considered, advocating the necessity for it to remain a cutting-edge service that attends to the changing needs profiles of children and their families. The article reviews the difficulties experienced by families in the UK, where, as the government acknowledges, life chances are still unequal. It emphasises that early interventions can increase the likelihood of the family being able to engage or re-engage with mainstream societal services, thus reducing the long-term costs to society. It discusses the past and present UK policy context from 2004, when Sohns reported that the UK was the only country without a national policy of infrastructure in relation to early childhood intervention, until the present when, a raft of legislation is in place acknowledging its importance and the need for priority. Central to many effective early intervention programmes is the goal of establishing shared communication in the infant,key carer dyad, using alternative communication and therapy-based interventions. The article discusses parent-inclusive programmes which meet the needs of both parents and children, and receive endorsement from parents. Finally, the article considers evaluation of early childhood services, and the necessity of increasing the centrality of the family in service delivery in order to provide services which are integrated, relevant and efficacious. [source]