Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/20838
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Social Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Middle-Class Political Activism and Middle-Class Advantage in Relation to Public Services: A Realist Synthesis of the Evidence Base
Authors: Matthews, Peter
Hastings, Annette
Contact Email: peter.matthews@stir.ac.uk
Keywords: Inequality
Middle-classes
Activism
Public services
Realist synthesis
Issue Date: Feb-2013
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Citation: Matthews P & Hastings A (2013) Middle-Class Political Activism and Middle-Class Advantage in Relation to Public Services: A Realist Synthesis of the Evidence Base, Social Policy and Administration, 47 (1), pp. 72-92.
Abstract: Since the late 1960s social policy scholarship has been concerned with the distribution of the resources or benefits across social gradients. This article presents a review of the literature on one mechanism by which inequity might be produced - activism by middle-class service-users enabling them to capture a disproportionate share of resources. The review used the methodology of realist synthesis to bring together evidence from the UK, the USA and Scandinavian countries over the past 30 years. The aim was to construct a ‘middle-theory' to understand how and in which contexts collective and individual activity by middle-class service-users might produce inequitable resource allocation or rationing decisions that disproportionately benefit middle-class service-users. The article identifies four causal theories which nuance the view that it is the ‘sharp elbows' of the middle-classes which confer advantage on this group. It shows how advantage accrues via the interplay between service-users, providers and the broader policy and social context.
Type: Journal Article
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/20838
DOI Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9515.2012.00866.x
Rights: This item has been embargoed for a period. During the embargo please use the Request a Copy feature at the foot of the Repository record to request a copy directly from the author. You can only request a copy if you wish to use this work for your own research or private study. This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Matthews P (2013) Middle-Class Political Activism and Middle-Class Advantage in Relation to Public Services: A Realist Synthesis of the Evidence Base, Social Policy and Administration, 47 (1), pp. 72-92, which has been published in final form at http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-9515.2012.00866.x/full. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance With Wiley Terms and Conditions for self-archiving.
Affiliation: Sociology/Social Pol&Criminology
University of Glasgow

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