Social Mobility, the Class Pay Gap and Intergenerational Worklessness: New Insights from the Labour Force Survey

January 2017

Social Mobility, the Class Pay Gap and Intergenerational Worklessness

Social mobility remains at the very top of the political agenda. Yet the UK has traditionally lacked a data source extensive enough to pinpoint exactly where to target policy interventions intended to improve social mobility.

This report capitalises on new socio-economic background questions within the UK Labour Force Survey (LFS) to provide the most comprehensive analysis of social mobility to-date. Drawing on an unusually large sample of 64,566 the authors have been able to move beyond the normal measures of national mobility rates to shine a light on a number of pressing but largely unexplored questions. In particular, they hone in on mobility in the top echelons of British society by examining the openness of the professions, and at the bottom by looking at intergenerational worklessness.

The report ends with three proposals to improve this important data source to help answer some key questions regarding social mobility.

Client: Social Mobility Commission

Authors: Sam Friedman, Daniel Laurison & Lindsey Macmillan

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