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Is digital upskilling the next generation our ‘pipeline to prosperity’?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3961-3979
JournalNew Media and Society
Volume20
Issue number11
Early online date5 Jul 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2018

Abstract

The British government is claiming digital skills will deliver economic growth to the country and social mobility to young people: its ministers call it ‘a pipeline to prosperity’. While declaring this pipeline, the government assumes the needs of the economy and young people’s needs are (or should be) synchronised. We challenge this assumption and the policy it sustains with data from questionnaires, workshops and interviews with 50 young people from communities in South Wales (including a former mining town and a deprived inner city area) about digital technology’s role in their everyday life. We use a new typography to compare the reality of their socially and economically structured lives to the governmental policy discourse that makes them responsible for their country’s future economic success. To explain these young people’s creative and transgressive use of technology, we also make an empirically grounded contribution to the ongoing theoretical debates about structure and agency.

    Research areas

  • digital economy, digital skills, education, gender, social mobility, youth

ID: 130596182