Although social class or background isn't one of the protected characteristics in the Equality Act 2010, we felt it was important to devote a section of this guide to the discrimination and disadvantages experienced by people because of their socio-economic background. This is a wide-ranging theme, which could include education, income, housing, family, employment, geographic location and accent, and of course may often be interlinked with other themes in the EDI guide, such as race, gender and disability.
Assessing and measuring social mobility is complex, but there are various charities and other organisations which regularly publish reports and data. For example, the Social Mobility Commission publishes regular 'state of the nation' reports and indices. Their 2020 report, The Long Shadow of Deprivation revealed that in England, people from disadvantaged families can earn up to twice as much as people from similarly disadvantaged families, depending on where they grew up, even in neighbouring areas (for example Bradford and Harrogate). Their 2021 State of the Nation report found that 62% of those in professional jobs are from privileged backgrounds.
In this section, you'll find information resources relating to these themes. These include books, films, archives, and social media, and they examine social mobility issues from many perspectives, including history, society, politics, culture, literature, and more.
We hope you find the resources here and on our reading list informative and interesting, and as always, we welcome your suggestions for books and other resources to include.
This section highlights physical and digitised archives at Newcastle University and elsewhere which cover themes relating to social mobility.
The PARTNERS programme has been running since the year 2000 and is one of the most well-established supported entry routes to higher education of its kind. Over 6,500 students have studied at Newcastle University via the PARTNERS programme.
The Student Union's 93% Club Newcastle is a national social mobility initiative dedicated to improving the university experience of students from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds.
The North East Child Poverty Commission is hosted at Newcastle University and works to address poverty and it's effects.