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171 ED ITO R IA L Social exclusion This issue of Benefits takes up the theme of social exclusion. It is a term which has been used widely in England since the establishment of the Social Exclusion Unit in 1997, but even before that it had been employed at a European level to frame discussions about social policy objectives for the EU. In Scotland, the debate has focused on social inclusion and, more recently, on social justice. Its origins as a political term of art – or of convenience – has led many to treat it with suspicion. The explosion of academic work that

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SIX Social exclusion exclusion and inclusion are universal features of human interaction, from global migration patterns to playground cliques. Divides are often given concrete form, for example the security gates that bar non-residents from elite housing developments, or the membership criteria that preserve the integrity of social clubs. These divisions are imposed formally, but often they arise from more subtle judgements about appearance and creed. The experience of being excluded can also be positive, although usually it entails a sense of losing out

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127 FIVE Social exclusion Defining social exclusion At the beginning of the millennium social exclusion was described as ‘the single dominant issue on the current political agenda in contemporary Europe’ (Ratcliffe, 2000, p 169). According to the European Commission (a source of much activity on the subject) in their 1992 Communication ‘Towards a Europe of solidarity’ (COM (92) 542), social exclusion results from: ‘mechanisms whereby individuals and groups are excluded from taking part in the social exchanges, from the component practices and rights of

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65 EIGHT Social exclusion The idea of exclusion Many authors have written about social exclusion in recent years. Most have been less concerned to understand the concept than they have to impose their own meanings on it. Although the idea seemed new to many people in the 1990s, it has grown out of an ancient tradition in Continental Europe. The idea developed mainly in the context of French social policy. Social policy in English-speaking countries has tended to focus on the position of the poor. By contrast, French social policy has never mainly been

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311 THIRTEEN The multidimensional analysis of social exclusion Nick Bailey, Eldin Fahmy and Jonathan Bradshaw Introduction Previous chapters in this volume explore different dimensions of poverty and social exclusion in the UK, while the companion volume (Dermott and Main, 2017) presents evidence on the poverty and social exclusion experienced by different social groups or in different locations. Although many of these contributions also examine how disadvantage in one area relates to disadvantage in others, they essentially focus on one or two aspects of

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Volume 1 - The Nature and Extent of the Problem
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The largest UK research study on poverty and social exclusion ever conducted reveals startling levels of deprivation. 18m people are unable to afford adequate housing; 14m can’t afford essential household goods; and nearly half the population have some form of financial insecurity.

Defining poverty as those whose lack of resources forces them to live below a publicly agreed minimum standard, this text provides unique and detailed insights into the nature and extent of poverty and social exclusion in the UK today.

Written by a team of leading academics, the book reports on the extent and nature of poverty for different social groups: older and younger people; parents and children; ethnic groups; men and women; disabled people; and across regions through the recent period of austerity. It reflects on where government policies have made an impact and considers potential future developments.

A companion volume Poverty and Social Exclusion in the UK Volume 2 focuses on different aspects of poverty and social exclusion identified in the study.

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The Multifaceted Consequences of Labour Market Insecurity

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Policymakers throughout Europe are enacting policies to support youth labour market integration. However, many young people continue to face unemployment, job insecurity, and the subsequent consequences.

Adopting a mixed-method and multilevel perspective, this book provides a comprehensive investigation into the multifaceted consequences of social exclusion. Drawing on rich pan-European comparative and quantitative data, and interviews with young people from across Europe, this text gives a platform to the unheard voices of young people.

Contributors derive crucial new policy recommendations and offer fresh insights into areas including youth well-being, health, poverty, leaving the parental home, and qualifying for social security.

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Volume 2 - The dimensions of disadvantage
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How many people live in poverty in the UK, and how has this changed over recent decades? Are those in poverty more likely to suffer other forms of disadvantage or social exclusion? Is exclusion multi-dimensional, taking different forms for different groups or places?

Based on the largest UK study of its kind ever commissioned, this fascinating book provides the most detailed national picture of these problems. Chapters consider a range of dimensions of disadvantage as well as poverty - access to local services or employment, social relations or civic participation, health and well-being. The book also explores relationships between these in the first truly multi-dimensional analysis of exclusion.

Written by leading academics, this is an authoritative account of welfare outcomes achieved across the UK.

A companion volume Poverty and Social Exclusion in the UK: Volume 1 focuses on specific groups such as children or older people, and different geographical areas.

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Part One: Regeneration and social exclusion

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357 FIFTEEN What is social exclusion? Ruth Levitas Introduction It is commonplace now to assert that social exclusion is not a state but a process. It is neither; it is a concept, and a concept which may be more or less useful in describing or explaining reality. Although the term has been current in social policy circles for nearly two decades, it is less than two years since it became prominent in public political discourse in Britain. The term ‘social exclusion’ played almost no part in Labour’s pre-election lexicon. Within months, in August 1997, it was a

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