Friday, 20 January 2012

Middle class community activism

Through this blog I've been discussing my interest in the side of my main research interest - spatial patterning of economic inequalities - that is largely ignored in most of the literature: affluent, or middle-class, communities and neighbourhoods.

For example, I discussed the growth of Edinburgh's New Town as a middle class "ghetto"; the likelihood of middle-class parents chasing schools that recieve the "people premium"; and the general problem I percieve in researching what are considered "normal" neighbourhoods.

This was in the midst of doing a research project - a sort of literature review - with my old supervisor at Glasgow University Annette Hastings. This project reported to the AHRC in October and we have the report to them and a paper (hopefully) to report on in coming months. But, right now, we've begun revealing our findings through the CLES New Start blog site: Understanding middle class community activism.

The main finding - that the middle classes are more active and get more from it - almost seems too obvious to be worth saying. Yet there is not much out there that evidences this assertion and, as we discuss here, there are important implications for public policy, and particularly regeneration and enhanced services for deprived communities, if we accept this.

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