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Social Policy and the Transition to Adulthood

Social Policy and the Transition to Adulthood

Toward Stronger Institutions and Individual Capacities

(p.534) Chapter 16 Social Policy and the Transition to Adulthood
On the Frontier of Adulthood
Richard A. Settersten Jr.
University of Chicago Press

This chapter examines the intersection between early adult development and social policy in the spheres of work, education, and family. In particular, it asks how social policies and institutions regulate the structure and content of early adulthood and how well the models of and routes to early adult life promoted within institutions match the needs and everyday realities of young people. It also asks for whom the transition is helped or hindered in the process and how policies might be created or reformed to ease entry into and promote development during adulthood. It also considers some of the special challenges faced by vulnerable or at-risk populations, how better safety nets might be created, how more effective information and guidance might be provided, and how civic engagement might be fostered. The chapter concludes by highlighting some of the complexities associated with making social policy on adult transitions and with bridging science, policy, and practice.

Keywords:   social policy, work, education, family, institutions, adult transitions, early adult life, adulthood, safety nets, young people

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