Comparing area based and thematic social inclusion partnerships: a focus on young people

Macpherson, Suzi (2003) Comparing area based and thematic social inclusion partnerships: a focus on young people. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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The introduction of the Social Inclusion Partnership (SIP) programme in Scotland in 1999 emerged as part of policy commitment to achieving social inclusion. The significance of this policy context to the SIP programming came through the move within urban policy programmes from focusing solely on tackling urban deprivation to also target resources towards rural and coalfield areas and socially excluded groups. With this change in approach came an explicit commitment to tackling the social exclusion experienced by young people at both the neighbourhood and local authority levels. Within this policy context, this study set out to compare the approach adopted by one thematic SIP (the Big Step) and one area-based SIP (Drumchapel SIP) to promoting social inclusion for young people. Using a care study methodology, data was collected using a combination of interviews with SIP stakeholders, young people and a range of external ‘experts’, supported by analysis of SIP documents and observation of SIP meetings and other formal events.

Three key themes frame the focus of this study. First, an investigation of the theoretical and policy influences steering the approach taken within the case study SIPs to achieve social inclusion for young people illustrates a clear theoretical and policy framework driving the work of the SIPs influenced by concerns to achieve social inclusion by promoting a mixture of rights and responsibilities for excluded groups. The result is an explicit programme of work to promote social integration through active participation in society and the economy. Alongside this, however, emerges an implicit concern with managing the individual and social costs of young people’s exclusion from labour market and other socially acceptable activities in order to reduce the problems associated with young people. Second, the practice of the case study SIPs was compared across three key areas: the working practices of the SIPs in responding to the agenda on ‘strategic working’; the views of respondents on the relative value of working in partnership; and the involvement of young people within the decision-making structures of the SIPs. Clear distinctions in the practices of the case study SIPs were identified. This provided an opportunity to reflect on the relative contribution made by area-based and thematic SIPs to the promotion of social inclusion for young people, and from this to review the wider applicability of the findings from the case study SIPs as the third theme of the study. Extrapolating trends emerging from the case study SIPs, the study concludes that both types of SIP contribute towards promoting the social inclusion of young people, with area-based SIPs addressing the social exclusion of young people within the wider community context and thematic SIPs foregrounding the interests of young people.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Colleges/Schools: College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Urban Studies
Supervisor's Name: Kearns, Prof. Ade and Fitzpatrick, Dr. Suzanne
Date of Award: 2003
Depositing User: Elaine Ballantyne
Unique ID: glathesis:2003-2087
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 06 Sep 2010
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2012 13:51

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