Why wealth matters

Karen Rowlingson and Stephen Mckay

in Wealth and the Wealthy

Published by Policy Press

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9781847423085
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447305620 | DOI:
Why wealth matters

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  • Social Stratification, Inequality, and Mobility


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This chapter considers why wealth is an important issue for social science and, in particular, for social policy. It argues that wealth is an important issue because there has been increasing emphasis placed on personal assets by both Conservative-led and Labour governments in recent years. This shift towards personal assets and more individual responsibility for welfare has, however, failed to achieve its aim of greater individual financial security and well-being, and so, the chapter argues, a new settlement is needed. The chapter also argues that wealth, in the form of personal assets, is important because it plays a different role in people's lives than income. There is growing evidence that wealth might have an independent effect on people's health, prospects and general well-being.

Keywords: assets; wealth; well-being; financial security; income

Chapter.  7077 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social Stratification, Inequality, and Mobility

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