According to a report released today, social mobility is generally highest around London and lowest in rural areas…
How Social Mobility Varies by Local Authority in England in 2017
NB – There’s a nice ‘interactive’ infographic at the link above!
London and its environs (mostly Surrey) have the highest levels of social mobility, while rural areas generally have lower levels of mobility.
Interestingly it isn’t just deprivation and wealth which predict social mobility… some wealthy areas like West Berkshire and Crawley perform badly for social mobility – in these areas, it is very difficult for children born into poor backgrounds to climb the income ladder.
Conversely, some of the most deprived areas are “hotspots”, providing good education, employment opportunities and housing for their most disadvantaged residents.
These include London boroughs with big deprived populations such as Tower Hamlets and Hackney.
The main reason for variations in social mobility highlighted by the report is the lack of available jobs, especially well-paying jobs, which is a real problem in some of the more rural areas.
It might be interesting to… (and I might play around with this later)
- Compare this data to deprivation indices and see how far wealth holds back social mobility.
- Compare this data to population density… Just a hunch, but surely all other things being equal, the denser the population the more (realistic) job opportunities?
- Compare this data to educational achievement and school type… to see if schools really do make a difference at the regional level.
- Take a sample of the lowest social mobility areas and the highest (they’d need to be similar) and just find out as much as possible about both areas to try and explain these differences….