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The role of social networks and geographical location
in labour market participation in the UK coalfields.

Gore, Tony; Hollywood, Emma


Tony Gore

Emma Hollywood


The demise of the coalmining industry has entailed an increased geographical separation of
individuals from workplaces, highlighting the importance of understanding the spatial dimension
of job search for those living in the coalfields. There has been an increasing interest among labour
market researchers on the role of place and social networks in influencing labour market behaviour. A
growing body of literature focuses on the importance of social networks in shaping people's attitudes,
behaviour, and decision makingöin particular, the links between people's social sphere and the
nature and extent of their participation in the labour market. We aim to examine the area effects of
social networks and how these affect labour market position. We will draw on material gathered
from a Joseph Rowntree Foundation funded project on the economic, social, and governance links
between coalfields and their neighbouring cities. Part of this research was composed of eighty-five
interviews carried out with unemployed job seekers across three contrasting coalfields (Lothian,
South Yorkshire, and the central Wales valleys). We will focus in particular on the issues of accessing
of South Wales jobs, knowledge and experience of the spatial labour market, and the role of social
networks in influencing job search and job knowledge.


Gore, T., & Hollywood, E. (2009). in labour market participation in the UK coalfields. Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy, 27, 1008-1021.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date 2009
Deposit Date Jun 25, 2012
Publicly Available Date Jun 25, 2012
Print ISSN 0263-774X
Electronic ISSN 1472-3425
Publisher SAGE Publications
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 27
Pages 1008-1021
Keywords Coalminig industry; social networks; geographical location; labour market; job searching; unemployment;
Public URL
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