- Available in: Print and PDF
- Published: January 1, 2002
A series of five seminars held in the winter of 1999 and the spring of 2000
Published 2002 (ISBN 1 902488 22 9) Price £39.80
Work A seminar held on 13th October 1999 – the first of a series of five seminars on Equality in Action. Professor Heather Joshi described research findings from the Centre for Longitudinal Studies, which illuminate the impact on children of their mothers’ employment. Rt. Hon. Harriet Harman MP looked at some of the policy implications of this research, putting forward a package of proposals aimed at helping the mothers of young children and stressing the need to bring social and economic policy together. Will Hutton drew attention to a number of other trends on the work/family front which policy needs to address.
Education A seminar held on 17th November 1999 – the second of a series of five seminars on Equality in Action. Professor Richard Layard addressed the issue of basic skills, comparing Britain’s record on literacy and numeracy with that of Germany and other countries. He stressed the particular impact of poor numeracy on employment prospects, and outlined policy proposals to help those whom the system is currently failing. Stewart Wood addressed a number of issues in higher education, offering junior colleges as a model for future expansion, arguing for changes to the system of monitoring universities and to the governance of research, and suggesting moves towards a partial privatisation of tuition.
Addressing Inequalities in Education A seminar held on 26th January 2000 – the third of a series of five seminars on Equality in Action. Professor Miriam David and Dr Diane Reay discussed the effects of gender, race and class on educational opportunities. The speakers drew on studies of parental involvement in education and choice of school, of children’s understanding of parental involvement, and of access to higher education to highlight some of the problems in closing the gaps.
Higher Education A seminar held on 2nd February 2000 – the fourth of a series of five seminars on Equality in Action. Professor John Bynner addressed the social benefits of higher education, drawing on research findings from the Centre for Longitudinal Studies. Bahram Bekhradnia of HEFCE dealt with some of the economic benefits, but drew attention to the continuing failure to recruit students from poorer backgrounds. The monograph includes as Appendices two substantial papers prepared as background to the seminar. The first, by Professor Gareth Williams, is a review of literature on the economic benefits of higher education. The second, by Professor John Brennan, is a review of issues concerning graduate employment .
Public View and the Equality Agenda A seminar held on 16th February 2000 – the last of a series of five seminars on Equality in Action. On the basis of findings from the 1998 British Social Attitude Survey, Professor John Hills considered how far the Government’s equality agenda was in line with public views. The findings reveal a general desire for greater equality but some reservations about use of the benefits system as a means of achieving this. Professor Julian Le Grand stressed the need for a preventive approach to poverty. He put forward a proposal for promoting greater equality without resort to old-style redistributive mechanisms, namely through a universal capital grant.