Children in the City: Home, Neighborhood, and Community

By Pia Christensen; Margaret O'Brien | Go to book overview

neighbourhood quality of life. There is a danger that, in doing so, broader questions may be overlooked, and the wider political responsibilities of central and local governments to ensure a good quality of life for children in environmental terms also need to be addressed.


Notes
1
For the purposes of this chapter, I am using the definition in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and will refer to all children and young people under the age of 18 as 'children'.
2
Then the health promotion arm of the England and Wales Department of Health; now the Health Development Agency, based in London.
3
It should also be noted that Putnam's formulation of social capital is derived partly from theoretical ideas developed in the USA by Coleman (1988), and an important strand of research has developed in the USA on parents' social capital and its impact on outcomes in children (see e.g. Furstenberg and Hughes (1995) for a useful critique).
4
Boyden and Ennew (1997), Christensen and James (2000), James and Prout (1997).
5
The emerging 'welfare research' paradigm seeks to incorporate social context into health research and to explore the importance of 'place', 'lay knowledge' and lay narratives into theories and research on health inequalities (Macintyre et al. 1993; Popay et al. 1998; Williams et al. 1999).
6
The research did not explore the direct effects of parents' or family social capital on children (see, for example Allatt 1993, 1996). Rather the intention was to explore the advantages and disadvantages of conceptualising social capital as a community level attribute in relation to children.
7
I have tended to anonymise both places and names in research I have conducted with children, for ethical reasons. In the study reported here, this was to assure those involved in the research process of the confidentiality of the research: the children themselves, the schools and representatives of the town council and the local health promotion agency who helped set up the research. Previous research in the same town had named the town, and everyone involved in this research appeared to be appreciative of the fact that the town would not be named in future research reports.
8
This term is used to describe someone taking a car without the owner's permission and driving it dangerously.
9
A further ethical point to note is that, in seeking consent, care was taken not to raise children's expectations about what the research might produce in the way of change in their environments. This was a serious concern for everyone involved in the research, was often raised by the children, and was discussed at length. Preliminary findings were fed back to the children in a leaflet and they were asked whether their views were represented fairly and accurately. Findings were also disseminated to the relevant agencies and the town council.

References
Adams, R., 1995, 'Places of childhood'. In P. Henderson (ed.), Children and Communities (London: Pluto Press).
Allatt, P., 1993, 'Becoming privileged: the role of family process'. In I. Bates and G. Riseborough (eds), Youth and Inequality (Buckingham: Open University Press).
Allatt, P., 1996, 'Consuming schooling: choice, commodity, gift and systems of exchange'. In S. Edgell, K. Hetherington and A. Warde (eds), Consumption Matters:

-180-

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Children in the City: Home, Neighborhood, and Community
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Figures ix
  • Tables x
  • Preface xv
  • Acknowledgements xvii
  • 1 - Children in the City 1
  • References 11
  • 2 - Place, Space and Knowledge 13
  • Notes 27
  • 3 - Children's Views of Family, Home and House 29
  • 4 - 'Displaced' Children? 46
  • 5 - Shaping Daily Life in Urban Environments 66
  • 6 - Children in the Neighbourhood 82
  • References 98
  • 7 - The Street as a Liminal Space 101
  • 8 - Neighbourhood Quality in Children's Eyes 118
  • 9 - Regenerating Children's Neighbourhoods 142
  • Notes 160
  • 10 - Improving the Neighbourhood for Children 162
  • Notes 180
  • 11 - Planning Childhood 184
  • Note 204
  • Index 206
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