Sociology and Social Policy

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What is the difference between a social problem and a sociological problem?
A social problem is a social behaviour that causes public public/private misery and calls for collective action to solve it. A sociological problem is any pattern of relationships that calls for a sociological explanation
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What seven factors affect whether or not sociological research succeeds in influencing social policy?
Ideology of the government, electoral popularity, interest groups, globalisation, critical sociology, cost and funding sources
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How do Functionalists and Positivists view social policy?
Functionalists believe the government serve the interests of society as a whole and sociologists can provide the government with information to improve society. They favour 'piecemeal social engineering' policies.
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What is the social democratic perspective (labour) view on social policy?
It favours major redistribution of wealth from the rich to the poor. Sociologists should be involved in researching social problems and making recommendations.
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Give an example of a social democratic perspective social policy
Townsend's research on poverty led him to make recommendations for policies such as fairer, higher benefit levels and more public spending on education, healthcare and welfare
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What is the Marxist view on social policy?
Social policy serves the interest of capitalism . Policies provide ideological legitimation, they maintain a fit labour force and prevent revolution. The sociologist's main role should be to criticise capitalist social policy
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What is the Feminist view on social policy?
Society is patriarchal and policies perpetuate women's subordination. Liberal feminists have had an impact on anti-discrimination and equal pay policies. Radical feminists had an impact on the establishment of women's refugees for escaping violence
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What is the New Right view on social policy?
State welfare provision should be minimal. Murray argues welfare policies create a dependency culture. Sociologists should develop policies tat promote individual responsibility and support rational choice theory e.g. zero tolerance of crime
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What is the Postmodernist view on social policy?
It is impossible to discover the objective truth and so sociological research and findings cannot provide a satisfactory basis for policy making
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Card 2

Front

What seven factors affect whether or not sociological research succeeds in influencing social policy?

Back

Ideology of the government, electoral popularity, interest groups, globalisation, critical sociology, cost and funding sources

Card 3

Front

How do Functionalists and Positivists view social policy?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

What is the social democratic perspective (labour) view on social policy?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

Give an example of a social democratic perspective social policy

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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