Neighbourhoods, opportunity structures and occupational aspirations

Furlong, A., Biggart, A., and Cartmel, F. (1996) Neighbourhoods, opportunity structures and occupational aspirations. Sociology, 30(3), pp. 551-565. (doi:10.1177/0038038596030003008 )

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In this paper we use evidence from the Scottish Young People's Surveys to explore some of the ways in which local contexts help to shape young people's subjective orientations towards the labour market. We attempt to move beyond the concept of `opportunity structures' introduced by Roberts by considering the salience of a number of possible components of these structures of opportunity. We argue that young people's occupational aspirations are shaped as part of an interplay between individual inequalities and opportunity contexts and we provide evidence to challenge earlier research which cast doubt on the importance of local contexts. Our research suggests that neighbourhoods have an important impact on male occupational aspirations but that contextual effects have a weaker effect on females.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Cartmel, Mr Fred and Furlong, Professor Andy
Authors: Furlong, A., Biggart, A., and Cartmel, F.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Education > Social Justice Place and Lifelong Education
Journal Name:Sociology
Publisher:Sage Publications Ltd.
ISSN (Online):1469-8684

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