Major new think-tank report uses MCS data

11 November 2009

Demos, a think tank focusing on power and politics, released a major report on 8 November identifying strong links between parenting style and character development in children.

Demos, a think tank focusing on power and politics, released a major report on 8 November identifying strong links between parenting style and character development in children. The Building Character report, which analysed MCS data from over 9,000 households, highlights evidence that a particular group of children aged 0–3 are more vulnerable to parental influence than others.

It found that in the UK, eight per cent of families have parents that are ‘disengaged’, which would equate to approximately 600,000 families. These families are also most likely to be found amongst low-income groups, leaving particularly vulnerable children triply disadvantaged by pre-natal conditions, parenting and economic factors.

Richard Reeves, co-author of the report and director of Demos said: ‘Parenting is the final frontier for issues of social justice and social mobility. No government can ignore the fact that some parents need more support than others: we must end this conspiracy of silence.’

The report, full details of which are given below, was launched on 11 November at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London, having already generated considerable press interest.

Lexmond, J. and Reeves, R. (2009) Building Character. London: Demos. www.demos.co.uk/publications/parenting