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Measuring Social Exclusion Ruth Levitas Second Peter Townsend Memorial Conference: The State of the Art January 2011.

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Presentation on theme: "Measuring Social Exclusion Ruth Levitas Second Peter Townsend Memorial Conference: The State of the Art January 2011."— Presentation transcript:

1 Measuring Social Exclusion Ruth Levitas Second Peter Townsend Memorial Conference: The State of the Art January 2011

2 Potential advantages of ‘social exclusion’ An emphasis on process rather than state An insistence on multi-dimensionality The centrality of the ‘social’ and therefore of social relationships.

3 Individuals, families and groups can be said to be in poverty when they lack the resources to obtain the types of diet, participate in the activities and have the living conditions and amenities which are customary, or at least widely encouraged and approved, in the societies to which they belong. Their resources are so seriously below those commanded by the average individual or family that they are, in effect, excluded from ordinary living patterns, customs and activities. Peter Townsend, Poverty in the UK, 1979

4 Lack of income and productive resources to ensure sustainable livelihoods; hunger and malnutririon; ill health; limited or lack of access to education and other basic services; increased morbidity and mortality from illness; homelessness and inadequate housing; unsafe environments and social discrimination and exclusion. It is also characterised by lack of participation in decision-making and in civil, social and cultural life. United Nations, 1995

5 PSE 1999 Four dimensions of exclusion: exclusion from adequate income or resources labour market exclusion service exclusion (including questions of access and affordability of public and private services) exclusion from social relations (including social support, social networks and participation in common social activities, as well as factors inhibiting participation)

6 Sonia Sodha and William Bradley 3D Poverty. Demos, 2011

7 Ruth Levitas et al. THE MULTI-DIMENSIONAL ANALYSIS OF SOCIAL EXCLUSION 2007

8 to review existing sources on multi- dimensional disadvantage or severe forms of social exclusion; to recommend possibilities for secondary analysis of existing data sets to explore the dynamics of social exclusion; to identify any relevant gaps in the knowledge base; and to recommend research strategies for filling such gaps.

9 Social exclusion is a complex and multi- dimensional process. It involves the lack or denial of resources, rights, goods and services, and the inability to participate in the normal relationships and activities, available to the majority of people in a society, whether in economic, social, cultural or political arenas. It affects both the quality of life of individuals and the equity and cohesion of society as a whole.

10 The Bristol Social Exclusion Matrix (B-SEM)

11 Resources: Material/economic resources Income. Possession of necessities Home ownership. Other assets and savings. Debt. Subjective poverty. Access to public and private services Public services Utilities Transport Private services Access to financial services Social resources Institutionalisation/separation from family Social support Frequency and quality of social contact Cultural resources Basic skills (literacy, numeracy, competence in English) Educational attainment

12 Participation: Economic participation Paid work Providing unpaid care Undertaking unpaid work Nature of working life Quality of working life Social participation Participation in common social activities Social roles. Cultural participation Access to/participation in education Cultural leisure activities Internet access. Political and civic participation Citizenship status Enfranchisement Political participation Civic efficacy Civic participation, voluntary activity/membership

13 Quality of life Health and well-being Physical health and exercise Mental health Disability Life satisfaction Personal development Self-esteem/ personal efficacy Vulnerability to stigma Self-harm and substance misuse. Living environment Housing quality Homelessness Neighbourhood safety Neighbourhood satisfaction Access to open space Crime, harm and criminalisation Objective safety/victimisation Subjective safety, for example, perceptions and fear of crime Exposure to bullying and harassment Discrimination Criminal record ASBO Imprisonment.

14 Risk factors gender ethnicity social class housing tenure household composition religious affiliation critical life events

15 Key questions Are the domains and dimensions of the B-SEM appropriate for mapping the experience of social exclusion or multi-dimensional disadvantage? Are the domains and dimensions of the B-SEM appropriate for mapping the dynamics of multi-dimensional disadvantage? Are we missing anything that should be included? What are the best indicators for social resources, especially social networks as opposed to support? What are the best indicators for ‘well-being’ – and indeed how useful a concept is ‘well-being’?

16 The Bristol Social Exclusion Matrix (B-SEM)


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