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UK Students’ Subjective Experiences and Responses to Higher Education Austerity : Implications and Lessons for the Future

Athanasia Chalari et Clive Sealey
p. 229-245


The 2010 UK Coalition government published The Coalition: our programme for government, outlining ‘deficit reduction’ as the main priority for the Coalition’s fixed 5 years of government. The significance of this became apparent through the austerity measures in public expenditure and specifically social policy expenditure. However, it is young people for whom austerity has had the most deleterious effects, with the policy changes in higher education funding in 2011 being emblematic. These changes included a tripling of undergraduate higher education (UHE) tuition fees paid by students from £ 3,000 to £ 9,000 per year, and an increase in means tested repayable maintenance loans of up to £ 5,500 for those living outside London. The government rationalised these changes as a way to pay for the increasing student population. As a consequence of these significant changes, the estimate of debt from the Institute for Fiscal Studies for students leaving UHE following these changes is over £ 44,000, nearly € 20,000 more than before the change (Crawford and Jin 2014). This empirical qualitative study aims to explore the ways in which UHE students in the UK have been affected by these policy measures. The study analyses students’ subjective experiences and responses to the UHE funding policy changes, and highlights in particular that these austerity policy changes to UHE student financing is impacting on younger generation in a way that has the potential to destabilize their personal and professional lives now and in the future. The study also discusses how in other European countries who may be affected by similar austerity measures.

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  • 1 Lapavitas, C. et alli, 2010.
  • 2 Office for Budget Responsibility, 2014.
  • 3 Blanchflower, D., 2015.
  • 4 Bradshaw, J. and Main, G., 2014.
  • 5 Antonucci, L., et allli, 2014.
  • 6 Hamilton, M., et alli, 2014.

1Since 2010, the UK in line with many European countries has faced severe economic challenges, resulting in various forms of ‘austerity’ measures.1 In the UK, this has led to a direct focus on ‘deficit reduction’, as expressed through cuts in public expenditure and specifically social policy expenditure, with £ 36 billion worth of public expenditure cuts up to the end of 2014, with another £ 55 billion worth of cuts planned for 2015-2019.2 This means that, at the time of writing total public expenditure is projected to fall by 2018-19 to its lowest levels in terms of GDP in 80 years. A consistent and totemic slogan from the 2010-15 Coalition Government in relation to its austerity measures was that ‘We’re all in this together’, meaning that the impacts of austerity were being shared equally among different groups. While it is important to note that these austerity measures are affecting different groups in different ways, research has shown that it is young people for whom austerity has had the most detrimental impact in a number of ways..3,4 For example, in contrast to previous generations, young people in contemporary Europe experience a fragmented and uncertain reality,5 meaning that young people in contemporary Europe are perceived as the first generation to do worse than their parents.6

  • 7 Unison, 2015.

2In the UK, young people have seen continuous changes in their entitlement to social policy benefits, since 2010. In some instances, benefits have been removed altogether, such as in relation to the Education Maintenance Allowance for young people in further education. Young peoples’ benefits have also been cut and made more selective, such as in relation to the Connexions careers advice service, and the Youth Service has seen up to 2,000 jobs lost and around 350 youth centres have been closed.7 But perhaps the most demonstrative evidence of the impact on young people has been the package of changes made in 2011 to higher education in England, changes which were strongly resisted by many young people but which nevertheless prevailed. These 2011 changes encompassed :

  • Tripling of higher education tuition fees loan, from £ 3,000 to up to £ 9,000 per year, meaning an increase in the loans made to students to pay these fees upfront;

  • Increasing the monetary amount given to those from households earning less that £ 25,000 for means-tested but non-repayable maintenance grants, but reducing it for household earning above this amount;

  • Increasing the monetary amount given to all households for means tested but repayable maintenance loans, to a maximum of £ 5,500 for those living in London;

  • Increasing the income threshold at which the loan repayment for the tuition fees loan and the maintenance loans commenced from £ 15,000 to £ 21,000;

  • 8 Crawford, C., and Jin, W., 2014.
  • 9 The triple lock guarantee is a current policy that ensures that the monetary value of the state pen (...)
  • 10 Sealey, C., 2014.

3Additionally, the 2016-17 academic year saw further higher education funding changes for students. The most notable change has been the ending of all maintenance grants and their replacement with increased levels of maintenance loans, which is a significant modification from those changes made in 2011 outlined above. As a consequence of these changes, the Institute for Fiscal Studies has estimated that the debt for students leaving university following these changes is over £ 44, 000, which is nearly £ 20,000 more than before the change.8 These changes contrasted with policies for other groups such as the ‘triple lock’ guarantee for the state pension9 which ensured that pensioners’ income overall has continued to rise since the Great Recession. Young people in contrast face weaker social welfare provision, higher dependency on family support, and greater individualism which can lead to further intensified experiences of social exclusion.10

  • 11 Hansard, 2011.
  • 12 Cooper, C., 2012.
  • 13 Ministry of Justice, 2012.

4There have been two discernible instances of challenge and resistance to such austerity changes from young people. Firstly, in 2010 there were several countrywide protests against the tripling of student tuition fees, with the main one in London attracting up to 50,000 predominantly young people. Secondly, in 2011 several cities in the UK experienced disturbances and riots over a week-long period. Those involved were mainly young and male, and demonstrators outlined a number of motivating grievances for their involvement – from the increase in tuition fees, to the closure of youth services, and the scrapping of the education maintenance allowance. However, perhaps emblematic in this respect was the fact that not only were the central claims of these and related instances of resistance ignored, but the political discourse articulated in their aftermath, particularly after the riots, suggested that the response should focus on a tough, criminal justice response to the ‘troublesome youth’ who caused the riots.11,12 This was despite the fact that the majority of those charged were actually ‘adults’, not ‘juveniles’.13 This triple response of ignoring, pathologising and criminalizing young people’s initial resistance to austerity may go a long way to explaining why subsequently, instances of resistance have not been as evident. Additionally, the Brexit referendum on July 23rd 2016 revealed younger voters as much more likely to vote in favour of United Kingdom to remain as a part of the EU.


  • 14 Edmunds, J. and Turner, B., S., 2005.
  • 15 Bryman, A., 2015.

520 semi-structured in-depth narrative interviews took place in the UK during May and June 2014. All participants were undergraduate British students at the University of Worcester registered on various degrees, and the age of the participants was between 18-25 years. According to most of the contemporary sociological literature, generations are usually conceptualised on the basis of age-cohorts. This approach enables the operationalisation of the concept but limits the kind of sociological questions that can be asked, in terms of employability or unemployment for example.14 Participants were initially selected according to opportunistic sampling criteria,15 namely being on particular social sciences courses, and then used ‘snowballing’, with some of the participants introducing the researcher to others. Every effort was made to ensure an equal distribution of gender, class, family status and employment. However, it should be noted that Worcester University is a university that is mainly populated by lower middle class students, and this would have affected the sample frame. Appendix 1 shows a breakdown of the profile of participants.

6A larger number of participants would have been required in order to allow generalisations to be made about the wider population. Furthermore, the researchers were aware of the subjective evaluations and understandings involved in qualitative research and consequently a conscious attempt was made to offer a balanced interpretation of the participants’ views and opinions.

7The interviews aimed to inquire into how participants lived their lives during the period of British austerity, if and how they were affected by it in their everyday lives, who was responsible for the most harmful aspects of the austerity measures and, crucially, whether and how they would alter their behaviour or engage in some form of collective action to address these problems if they could. The study focused on the exploration of subjective experiences of participants and therefore the purpose of the study was not to ensure a representative or random sample. It would therefore be more appropriate to refer to this study as an exploratory investigation which reveals possible tendencies concerning the subjective experiences of British austerity. The participants were adults and were fully informed about the process; the questions did not raise any sensitive issues however, ethical authorisation was offered by the University of Worcester. All participants agreed to participate by signing a consent form stipulating confidentiality and anonymity. They were also informed that they were not obliged to participate in the research and that they could stop at any time, refuse to answer a question or ask for clarifications.

  • 16 Clarke, V. and Braun, V., 2013.

8The questions asked were identical for all respondents in terms of content and order. The specific questions asked during interviews were informed by the research literature and were asked in an open-ended format. Each interview, later transcribed, lasted an hour on average, with participants encouraged to tell their stories on how they experienced austerity. Themes emerged as part of participants’ responses to the questions regarding their views on the way they lived their life in contemporary Britain. Participants were encouraged to express their personal concerns and evaluations associated with the transformation of the British society by describing how their way of living had been affected and the ways they experienced everyday transformations. Thematic analysis was used,16 which consisted of repeated readings of the transcripts of the interviews, focusing on meaningful and relevant categories and themes associated with the lived experiences of this generation.

Subjective Experiences of Austerity

9Participants outlined the changes as affecting them in a number of ways, which contrasted and contradicted with each other as detailed below.

Negative experiences

10Participants were asked about the general effects of austerity on their current, personal circumstances, and some highlighted specific impacts, either for themselves or for other family members. These included problems accessing healthcare, lack of money, having to work more than one job to make ends meet, and rising costs in relation to food. A number of British respondents identified the current labour market as a specific concern, with high unemployment in particular as a significant issue, but this was mainly in terms of impacting on others rather than themselves. The specific impacts of welfare cuts were detailed in a number of ways such as lack of youth facilities, curtailed access to health services, reductions in benefits paid to certain groups, and changes in living standards. A number of participants identified the effect of the welfare cuts on families as a particular concern:

I think looking for work is a big [problem] because there’s just not as many jobs out there especially with the service sector cuts and stuff like that. It just affects everything like food and how much money families have. That can affect education and what sort of an education you get. (C2P2)

11Participants were also in the main aware that their economic circumstances in general for young people had changed in relation to previous generations. This concerned the housing market, but particularly to the change in the labour market away from being able to achieve employment on an almost continuous basis, as described below:

… so I think that compared with, say, two generations like my grandparents’ parents [people] walked out of school and got a job straight away. And so did my mum to a certain extent; she’s been in the same job for like 28 years or something. And I don’t think that [there are such] opportunities there as much for people my age. (C2P2)

12Two particular consequences of this were a shift away from reliance on the welfare state to having to rely either on family members for support or on their own self, as indicated below:

I think currently with the current government we have [you need to rely] more on yourself. I don’t think that’s a positive or negative thing. But I think we should be working to make our own personal lives and values better rather than relying on state funding. (C3P3)

13As all the participants were English students at an English University, they would all have been affected by the increase in tuition fees in 2011, from £ 3000 to up to £ 9000, as well the increased shift from grants to loans, and this was something that was specifically outlined. One particular consequence of this was a need to work, and the majority of participants worked, some in more than one job, or had to rely on other family members for financial support. A consequence of this, there was some anxiety about the life post-university, such as in relation to finding work, and particularly about their ability to pay back their student loan in the future:

Yeah well obviously I’m gonna have a high debt which means I probably won’t be able to get a mortgage till I’m older and it’s just not that great having a lot of debt. (A7P7)

14Participants did also outline the changes as something that could affect their future rather than the present. In contrast to the above, participants shared feelings of uncertainty, anxiety, worry about high unemployment rates, and concerns that the future would be worse. They all detailed that economic restrictions were being experienced first-hand and this resulted in prolonged feelings of pessimism and disappointment. There was also frustration reported by certain (not all) British participants of suffering which not only related to themselves, but also to others, especially in relation to other students. The reported feelings of frustration about the current situation was not so much on a personal level, but about the impact of the welfare cuts on others. For example, a central (and repeated) worry raised by various British participants was anxiety about the current and prospective enlargement of inequality, and this anxiety was also reported by British participants in relation to class and a class divide:

But generally speaking I would say that [my generation is] quite pessimistic […] because of the growth and inequality and everything that goes with it. (A4P4)

I think there’s gonna be a greater class divide as only very few belong to upper class. (A6P6)

15Additionally, most of the participants reported some negative and pessimistic feelings about their future prospects for unemployment and expressed anger and worry that new cuts would be introduced and unemployment rates would increase. Additionally, they participants expressed the fear that things would get worse, and expressed pessimism for the next generation of young people:

I feel sorry for the next generation. Erm, I think it’s gonna be harder for them when they grow up, especially as a parent myself that’s why I have my concerns of how my little one’s gonna get on and how he’s gonna be able to progress in the way that the situation is at the moment. (A2:P2)

16And in the same vein:

I think that the quality of life will kind of decrease for a greater proportion of people in the UK, because of the cuts that are having to be made, and the focus that the government are putting on [the cuts]. (M3P3)

17Participants’ negativity about the situation was also expressed through disappointment with and disconnect from the government. This disconnect made itself apparent in a feeling of powerless and a concomitant disengagement from wider society:

…a lot of people feel quite disengaged from like society and things like that…Like they don’t feel like they have the power to change anything so they just kind of go along with it as such [even if they] don’t agree with it. (C2P2)

18Such narratives reveal an increased anxiety about the anticipated future circumstances on a personal and more collective level. Thus, ‘austerity’ is experienced as a gradual or even on-going transformation, or as an on-going suffering process, and as something that will affect the future rather than the present.

Positive experiences

19The status of being a student had a contradictory impact on participants’ current circumstances. On the one hand, while the financial consequences of going to University meant that there was a degree of pessimism about the debt that resulted from it, as indicated above, on the other hand, for some participants the fact of being a student had improved their economic circumstances and made them feel better off:

Well, like I said before I feel very guilty because I’m better off, as a student even though I know most of it is loans. I’m living a better life than [before]. But then it’s hard to look back, I’m very grateful for where I am but I also want everyone else to be happier. (A3P3)

20One reason for this positivity was the monetary increase in the loan amount available to them as students, as it engendered an upturn in their living circumstances:

But then at the same time, especially at university when we’ve got all the funding for university some of us have been extremely lucky, most of [the young generation] have not been. And we’re all from the same area, the same background but I just think you have to be lucky it’s all a pot of luck at the end of the day. (A3P3)

21What this suggests is that because as students they had access to a steady income from maintenance loans (and possibly grants), they felt lucky as a consequence of this, highlighting this as a positive change in their immediate circumstances. There were a variety of reasons for this, such as the improvement in living standards that the increased income had permitted, and seeing the education they were receiving as value for money in the longer term in relation to the income they would earn:

Well when you look into the bigger picture, don’t really realise you’re gonna be in debt for so long and that you’ve got still more to pay back. [So] it just makes you think is it actually worth it. Cos you could like the career you want to go into and maybe you can’t do it any other way. [But] going to uni you don’t even know if you’re gonna get the job that you want. (A6P6)

22And on the other hand:

I actually quite like it being this much [the loan] I prefer it to in a weird way […] cus you don’t have to pay it back until you earn £ 21,000 or whatever it is a year. And I don’t think that many people are gonna pay it back, whereas I think before where it was £ 15,000 then graduates would get jobs like that straight away kind of thing so yeah I kinda like it…I think it makes me aware of what I’m getting for my money and kind of gives a comparison to like other people and whether you’re gonna get anything out of your money. (C2P2)

23Perhaps not surprisingly bearing in mind responses from the previous section, participants were generally optimistic about their present circumstances and the country’s circumstances:

I will say personally I feel optimistic because a few years ago any work would have been almost impossible without having a degree even if it is the minimal stuff, but now I know I stand a chance of getting that so I do have optimism there. (A4 P4)

24And similarly:

I’m optimistic. I feel like I’ve got a really good degree I’ve really enjoyed it and got so much out of it and I’ve got kind of three pathways that I’m looking for in the future so I’m excited about whichever way I go. (M3P4)

Yeah [optimistic]…I like to think it’ll be better, erm but I’m quite an ambitious person. I kind of always strive to be like the best so I think like for me I’m not the type of person to just give up so I think yeah I’ll be okay. (M4P4)

Optimistic I think…Well yeah I think I try to be optimistic sometimes I end up being pessimistic but most the time I feel optimistic. (M55)

25As set out in the Introduction, when the initial tuition fees increase was announced in 2010, there were significant resistance to this, involving student strikes, protests and riots. Since then, however, such resistance to this change in particular and austerity in general has been less apparent, and this was reflected in the responses from participants. A specific question that participants were asked was if they or anyone they knew had protested or resisted against the current situation. While some participants said that they had participated or resisted in some way, such as through social media, most participants stated that they hadn’t, as typified by the response below:

I think [I would protest] if our society started to run down a little bit and things started to happen. I’d maybe protest if it’s something personal in my life it’s affecting me and I got asked to or something like that. I might erm I think with like cuts with NHS and money and things like that, I think if I was working in it I might protest against it things like that I suppose. (A7P7)

26As reflected in the quote above, there was little impetus from most participants to engage in traditional forms of protest, and this resonates with the optimistic perspective of their present circumstances, as detailed above

Implication and Lessons for Future Policy Planning and Making

27To summarise the analysis, as anticipated the research detailed some clear negative impacts on students’ current circumstances, such as an increased level of debt, the increased reliance on self, and the concern with rising inequality. From such outcomes, we could expect participants’ responses to their present circumstances to reflect research studies which have shown that the effects of austerity measures are affecting young people negatively more strongly than other groups. On the contrary, however, what is striking is a level of optimism and positivity for the present that certain participants displayed, and this is perhaps contrary to what we might have expected, bearing in mind the changed circumstances of young people in the UK.

28Perhaps a point to note here is that this prevailing optimism was primarily linked to being a student, which seemed to cushion the impact of the changes on British young people, and so the sample frame itself might have been a contributory factor to this optimism, and a different sample of non-students might have provided a different response.

29This optimism for the present was in contrast to the distinct expressions of the negativity and pessimism towards the future expressed by participants. Perhaps unsurprisingly, this negativity and pessimism made itself apparent in a disappointment and disconnect with not only the government, but also a concomitant disengagement from wider society. There were also expressions of anxiety towards growing class inequalities, and this anxiety was expressed as a gradual, long-term transformation, or as an ongoing suffering process, and as something that will affect the future rather than the present.

30That anxieties and tensions were evident is not surprising when considering, as set out in the introduction, UK youth are the demographic for whom austerity has had the most negative impact within the UK, in terms of policy changes and outcomes. This acceptance and concomitant optimistic outlook could also explain the lack of direct resistance shown by the participants to the austerity changes in general, as evident in the interviews.

  • 17 Lupton, R., 2015.
  • 18 Standing, G., 2011.

31Possible reasons for this contrast between the present and future could be indeed that as they described, on the one hand the participants in the study were really better off than previously, and so this optimism is grounded in reality. This could be a direct impact of the increased tuition fees on participants’ monetary circumstances (i.e. securing funding for studying at the University), which improved their economic circumstances and acted to cushion participants from the worse effects of austerity. It could, alternatively, be reflection of the primarily lower middle class background of students who were interviewed. Despite being from such a background, the participants were not the working age adults who have been typically outlined as having been most affected by the austerity measure. Other studies have referred to this and related groups as ‘generation rent’, struggling to access homeownership; as ‘skivers’, struggling to cope with cuts in unemployment benefits levels and increased sanctions; or as the ‘squeezed middle’, experiencing falling real wages earnings.17 In this sense, the fact of being at University and having access to stable and secure monetary sources that they might not have previously had access to seems to have enabled them to overcome the ‘precarity’ precariousness that has been part of the process of deindustrialisation. This precarity has been intensified by changes associated with austerity, particularly factors leading to downward mobility such as temporary and insecure employment, causing temporary and insecure income.18 Rather, the UK participants’ responses suggested a stability and security in their status that is in contrast to the expectation that, as young people, they would feel this ‘precarity’ resulting from austerity. Furthermore, it has been argued previously that the class characteristics of the ‘precariat’ are as follows:

  • 19 ibid.

It consists of people who have minimal trust relationships with capital or the state, making it quite unlike the salariat. And it has none of the social contract relationships of the proletariat, whereby labour securities were provided in exchange for subordination and contingent loyalty, the unwritten deal underpinning welfare states. Without a bargain of trust or security in exchange for subordination, the precariat is distinctive in class terms.19

  • 20 Chalari, A., 2015.

32The research here does not really support this, in the sense that the financial stability of support given to them as students seems to provide a social contract with participants that may have accounted for their lack of impetus towards direct resistance. However, the increased UK student debt is a current austerity measure that will have a definite impact on the future of many. For instance, there is the real possibility that while employment will be possible, employment at a pay level that enables them to pay back their debt is not necessarily guaranteed. This is where the notion of the precariat will have relevance in terms of limiting their ability to secure housing, to pursue leisure activities and to plan for their or their children’s future. It is therefore evident that in the UK, these changes in higher education have had a profound impact on young people in comparison to older people. Perhaps the main difference compared to older generations is that the younger generation has not been able to secure forms of social, political and economic privileges enjoyed by previous generations. As a result, any kind of austerity measures aiming at a present or future change of social, economic and political circumstances leaves them more exposed compared to older generations, who might (although not necessarily) have had the chance to secure some kind of safety net (through education, employment, pension rights, secured property).20

  • 21 Silbereisen, R. et alli, 2007.
  • 22 Pinquart, M. and Silbereisen, R. K., 2004.

33Additionally, the issue of social change emerged as being experienced as ‘relatively lasting transformations of social features, such as structures and institutions, norms, values, cultural products and symbols’.21 However, as previously observed, social change ‘may occur gradually or become the result of sudden and dramatic transformations of political, social and economic institutions as was the case with the breakdown of the communist system in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union’.22

  • 23 Chalari, A., 2014.
  • 24 Chalari, A., 2015.

34Following the significant debt problems several other European counties are struggling with (particularly Greece), Britain constitutes another example of an economy (and society) which relies heavily on the economic practice of borrowing money on a macro and micro level. In the British context, the idea of borrowing money to pay the University fees has been perceived as a micro-economic individual problem exclusively associated with the younger generation, wherein the debt from austerity is subjectively felt as something that is individualised to the person, and therefore within the control of that person. This of course does not include the wider government debt. What is perhaps controversial in the British case is that the government encourages the younger generation to rely on debt in order to support the growth of their educational (and social) capital. However, the main problem related to other European countries experiencing austerity measure, as relevant studies such as in Greece reveal,23,24 is that the huge (and perhaps unresolved) debt problem relates to practices adopted by the previous generation who deliberately hypothecated the younger generation’s future.

  • 25 Chalari, A., 2014.
  • 26 Chalari, A., 2015.

35In this context, a distinct contrast can be drawn between this research and similar research on austerity in other countries which have suffered more extensively such as Greece, wherein the participants of comparable Greek studies described their experiences of austerity as an intense and rapid change of their economic, social and political subjective reality, akin to an almost violent transformation of their everyday life, of their feelings, their concerns and ability to cope with the rapidly changing reality.25,26 Thus, they experienced the changes as akin to the disorganization of the social, political and economic system, which was followed by ‘challenging customary interpretations of reality and undermining established routines’. However, in this study, British participants did not describe such a sudden and dramatic transformation; rather, participants referred to a continuing and perhaps even calculated process of change and readjustment, wherein while they were able to depict several enduring social transformations that were taking place, this was experienced as a gradual, albeit sometimes unfair and painful adjustment, from positive to negative. Thus, it seems particularly appropriate to characterize British participants’ experiences of austerity as challenging and infused with everyday anxieties and tensions, which, however, seem more like a continuing life struggle rather than a series of unexpected and threatening social, political and economic transformations.

  • 27 Chalari, A., 2015.

36Studies on the Greek crisis shows us, however, that when debt from austerity becomes an emotional and social concern and crisis at the social, political and economic levels, this has the potential to have a sustained harmful impact by facilitating prolonged experiences of disappointment, uncertainty, fear, pessimism, insecurity, anger, pressure, anxiety and depression experienced by all generations but primarily associated with the younger generation who is unable to plan its own future.27 This point is reinforced when we look at the experience of, for example young Greek people, where debt is having a real impact on their ability to produce long-term plans on a personal or professional level. Therefore, whereas the Greek debt problem is experienced as more of a macro-economic, social and political problem, wherein the debt from austerity is subjectively felt as something impacting on the future stability and economic prospects of the whole country, in the British context it is more of a micro-economic individual problem, wherein the debt from austerity is subjectively felt as something that is individualised to the person, and therefore within the control of that person. This of course does not include the wider government debt. Concomitantly, the extreme Greek circumstances show us that once debt becomes an emotional and social concern, it has the potential to have impact by facilitating prolonged experiences of disappointment, uncertainty, fear, pessimism, insecurity, anger, pressure, anxiety and depression.

37In the longer term, this potential transformation of prolonged austerity measures and policies (like the British case), into a social, political and economic crisis (like the case of Greece), will have implications not just for individual countries, but also for the wider European prospect for prosperity. Indeed, the findings of this study may well be contingent on the sample frame chosen, and more research on this would help us to understand whether other students and other groups of young people are experiencing and responding to austerity in similar or different ways. However, what remains evident, especially after the Brexit referendum, relates to the increasing need to understand, explain and explicitly recognise the younger generation’s limited access to the shaping and planning of its own future. And such recognition should perhaps be further expanded beyond British or Greek national, cultural, political or economic boarders, as the younger generation has been customarily restricted in terms of future policy planning and making.

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Unison The UK’s youth services: how cuts are removing opportunities for young people and damaging their lives, London: Unison, 2015.

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Table 1. Profile of participants

Table 1. Profile of participants
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1 Lapavitas, C. et alli, 2010.

2 Office for Budget Responsibility, 2014.

3 Blanchflower, D., 2015.

4 Bradshaw, J. and Main, G., 2014.

5 Antonucci, L., et allli, 2014.

6 Hamilton, M., et alli, 2014.

7 Unison, 2015.

8 Crawford, C., and Jin, W., 2014.

9 The triple lock guarantee is a current policy that ensures that the monetary value of the state pension in the UK increases by whichever is higher of a minimum of 2.5% each year, inflation or average earnings. It has been in operation since 2010, and has seen pensioner income increase much more that other groups dependent on the state, such as the unemployed.

10 Sealey, C., 2014.

11 Hansard, 2011.

12 Cooper, C., 2012.

13 Ministry of Justice, 2012.

14 Edmunds, J. and Turner, B., S., 2005.

15 Bryman, A., 2015.

16 Clarke, V. and Braun, V., 2013.

17 Lupton, R., 2015.

18 Standing, G., 2011.

19 ibid.

20 Chalari, A., 2015.

21 Silbereisen, R. et alli, 2007.

22 Pinquart, M. and Silbereisen, R. K., 2004.

23 Chalari, A., 2014.

24 Chalari, A., 2015.

25 Chalari, A., 2014.

26 Chalari, A., 2015.

27 Chalari, A., 2015.

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Référence papier

Athanasia Chalari et Clive Sealey, « UK Students’ Subjective Experiences and Responses to Higher Education Austerity : Implications and Lessons for the Future »Observatoire de la société britannique, 19 | 2017, 229-245.

Référence électronique

Athanasia Chalari et Clive Sealey, « UK Students’ Subjective Experiences and Responses to Higher Education Austerity : Implications and Lessons for the Future »Observatoire de la société britannique [En ligne], 19 | 2017, mis en ligne le 01 juin 2018, consulté le 25 février 2024. URL : ; DOI :

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Athanasia Chalari

Principal lecturer en sociologie à l'Université de Northampton

Clive Sealey

Senior lecturer en politiques sociales à l'Université de Worcester

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