Deconstructing ‘Generation Rent’: a one-day seminar

Papers are invited for a one-day seminar that discusses the interrelated issues of young people’s housing options and future welfare. Co-organised by Drs Tom Moore (Sheffield) and Kim McKee (St Andrews), the event emerges from their recent Leverhulme funded work on: Mind the (Housing) Wealth Gap. Dr Peter Mackie (Cardiff) will be delivering the opening keynote at this event, which is being funded by the Housing Studies Association.

Call for papers: young adults across the globe face a range of new and different challenges when trying to live independently and access housing that meets their needs. Homeownership has become the normalised ‘tenure of choice’ within the housing policies of many advanced economies, finding itself at the heart of restructured asset-based welfare systems that emphasise individual responsibility for current and future needs. Yet, homeownership continues to be difficult for young people to access, creating intra and inter-generational inequalities between those have access to assets and those who do not. In the UK this has led to the popularisation of the term ‘Generation Rent’, suggesting that young adults are likely to rent for longer periods of their life because homeownership is increasingly unobtainable. This has implications beyond housing policy, for it also impacts upon young peoples’ own family formation, their labour market opportunities, and their own personal sense of well-being and independence, not least because social, economic and political change has also rendered rental sectors insecure and unstable.

Academics, researchers, students, policymakers and practitioners are invited to interrogate the implications of these trends at a seminar to be held at the University of Sheffield on Friday 13th February 2015. Policy-relevant and theoretically-informed papers are encouraged on topics including (but not limited to):
• Young adults’ experiences, perceptions and aspirations of different kinds of housing tenure;
• Comparative analysis of young adults’ housing options and future welfare, both in the UK and internationally;
• The generational effects of housing and welfare state change, and the implications of this for young adults;
• The role of intergenerational family support in supporting young people, and the emotions and negotiations involved with giving and receiving;
• The experiences of young low-income households in the private rented sector;
• The housing pathways and transitions of young people;
• Benefit sanctions and their interactions with young people’s housing circumstances.
• Stigma, social housing, and welfare reform.

Abstracts of 250 words should be submitted to Nathalie Ferguson ( by Wednesday 17th December 2014. We particularly encourage contributions from both early career researchers, and colleagues in policy and practice.

If you wish to attend the seminar as a delegate, please register at Places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

Travel bursaries to the value of no more than £90.00 are available to those whose abstract is accepted. Please indicate if you wish to be considered for a bursary, with an approximate indication of cost, when submitting an abstract.