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The New Social MobilityHow the Politicians Got it Wrong$
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Geoff Payne

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781447310662

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447310662.001.0001

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Tracing the origins

Tracing the origins

(p.63) Five Tracing the origins
The New Social Mobility

Geoff Payne

Policy Press

For three decades after the mid-1970s there were almost no new sociological surveys of mobility. In this vacuum, findings (or rather a distorted version of them) were repeated and cross-referenced in successive government reports. Given the misrepresentation and misunderstanding of mobility revealed in Chapter 4, this chapter traces how mistakes have been copied from one document to another. The Cabinet Office Strategy Unit’s online discussion, Getting on, getting ahead is identified as a key influence on all three governing parties’ policies, with its incorrect measurements, and neglect of downward mobility. The earlier ‘Aldridge reports’ (2004, 2006) although over-pessimistic about mobility rates, briefly provided a better account.

Keywords:   sources, incorrect measurements, Cabinet Office Strategy Unit, downward mobility, Aldridge Reports

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