The politics of mobility

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Social mobility gauges the openness or closure of a society. An open society will exhibit a high level of social mobility due to a low persistence of privilege from one generation to the next; a closed society will exhibit a low level of social mobility due to persistence of social position across generations. As citizens and social scientists we endorse equality of opportunity, even when we disagree about the appropriate absolute level of inequality, so openness is a widely shared goal. We might even say that although we study mobility for many reasons, none is more important than to study social mobility in order to change it for the better. That said, we might go on to ask how the accumulation of research on social mobility over the past decade guides that interest in making society better.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationGenerating Social Stratification
Subtitle of host publicationToward a New Research Agenda
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages24
ISBN (Electronic)9780429968792
ISBN (Print)9780813367965
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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