Rise of the super-family

Prospect Magazine

Rise of the super-family

/ / Leave a comment

Is there any room left at the top?

The two-career family © Phil Disley

In the old developed world, where middle incomes are stagnant, today’s race goes to the super-family. It’s a throwback in many ways. It is tight knit, nuclear, husband-wife-and-kids, but with a twist: two successful, two highly educated, two well-paid parents. And it is a key reason why the top section of society is drawing away from the rest.

The 1970s were the start of it. It was when educated women penetrated every part of the professional labour market. They also started to take less and less time out of work when they had children, and began to earn serious money. Across the rich countries of the OECD, the group of leading developed economies, women now hold half of the “Class I” professional and managerial jobs. These are the jobs of the top sixth of society by income: the jobs of the elite.

This can

You need to be logged in to see this part of the content. Please either subscribe or Login to access.

Leave a comment


Alison Wolf

Alison Wolf
Alison Wolf is a professor in public sector management at King's College London 

Share this

Most Read

Prospect Buzz

  • Prospect's masterful crossword setter Didymus gets a shout-out in the Guardian
  • The Telegraph reports on Nigel Farage's article on Lords reform
  • Prospect writer Mark Kitto is profiled in the New York Times

Prospect Reads

  • Do China’s youth care about politics? asks Alec Ash
  • Joanna Biggs on Facebook and feminism
  • Boris Berezosky was a brilliant man, says Keith Gessen—but he nearly destroyed Russia