Transition to adulthood in England and Wales: The analysis of life trajectories of young adults

Pelikh, A
(2019) Transition to adulthood in England and Wales: The analysis of life trajectories of young adults. PhD thesis, University of Liverpool.

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This thesis investigates various life trajectories of young people in England and Wales during the transition to adulthood. This thesis moves beyond one-event transitions and investigates education and employment, partnership, and residential careers from a longitudinal perspective. This thesis investigates how the trajectories are influenced by birth cohort, parental socio-economic background, and individual’s life course characteristics. This thesis investigates the cohorts born between 1974 and 1991 who experienced their transition to adulthood since the beginning of the 1990s. Overall, the longitudinal analysis of 5-year birth cohorts highlighted significant changes in life course trajectories over the last 25 years, while some continuity was observed as well. This thesis presents evidence towards “protracted” youth transitions with further postponement of leaving the parental home and first partnership formation, which can be partially explained by the expansion of further and higher education. Overall, the analysis suggests that together with the postponement, life course trajectories among the youngest cohorts have become more complex with a higher number of events occuring in all life domains (e.g. higher rates of moving and higher rates of separation from first cohabiting unions). Overall, the findings suggest that there is a trend towards a convergence in trajectories between men and women, although persistent inequalities are observed in labour market outcomes. Findings of this thesis provide evidence that parental socio-economic background which has traditionally played an important role in shaping young people's life course trajectories in Britain still explains a large part of the variation in transitions. Young people from more advantaged backgrounds are more likely to obtain high qualifications and profit from higher returns to longer time spent in education. Despite an increase in the proportion of young people from less advantaged backgrounds going into higher education, they are still much less likely to occupy professional and managerial positions. In contrast to previous arguments, parental socio-economic background was found to play little role in partnership transitions among the cohorts studied in this thesis.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Engineering > School of Environmental Sciences
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 21 Aug 2019 13:26
Last Modified: 19 Jan 2023 00:55
DOI: 10.17638/03035128