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Social class as a moving average

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  • Brynin, Malcolm

Abstract

Are social (occupational) classes coherent, distinct entities? While they reflect an underlying reality, they are more fragmented than theory suggests. It is hypothesised that skill mismatches mean that each class includes a substantial proportion of poorly paid people who could be in the class below and highly paid people who could be in the class above, or in a class alone. This is tested for the service classes using the British Labour Force Survey. It is then shown using the British Household Panel Study that people within the service classes have differing class backgrounds, different class perceptions, and different political views depending on their hourly pay.

Suggested Citation

  • Brynin, Malcolm, 2010. "Social class as a moving average," ISER Working Paper Series 2010-06, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:ese:iserwp:2010-06
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Longhi, Simonetta & Brynin, Malcolm, 2010. "Occupational change in Britain and Germany," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(4), pages 655-666, August.
    2. Hartog, Joop, 2000. "Over-education and earnings: where are we, where should we go?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 131-147, April.
    3. Acemoglu, Daron, 2001. "Good Jobs versus Bad Jobs," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(1), pages 1-21, January.
    4. Sala, Emanuela & Lynn, Peter, 2004. "Measuring change in employment characteristics: the effects of dependent interviewing," ISER Working Paper Series 2004-26, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
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