UK Data Service data catalogue record for:

Affluent Worker in the Class Structure: a Digitised Sample of the Luton Study, 1961-1962

Title details

SN: 4871
Title: Affluent Worker in the Class Structure: a Digitised Sample of the Luton Study, 1961-1962
Persistent identifier: 10.5255/UKDA-SN-4871-1
Series: Affluent Worker, 1961-1962
Depositor: Todd, S., University of Manchester. School of Arts, Histories and Cultures
Principal investigator(s): Todd, S., University of Manchester. School of Arts, Histories and Cultures
Data collector(s): Bechhofer, F., University of Edinburgh. Research Centre for Social Sciences
Platt, J., University of Sussex. School of Social Sciences
Young, H., University of Manchester. Department of History
Original data producer(s): Goldthorpe, J.H., University of Oxford. Nuffield College
Lockwood, D., University of Essex. Department of Sociology
Sponsor(s): Economic and Social Research Council
Grant number: RES-061-23-0032-A


The citation for this study is:

Todd, S. (2009). Affluent Worker in the Class Structure: a Digitised Sample of the Luton Study, 1961-1962. [data collection]. University of Oxford. Nuffield College, University of Essex. Department of Sociology, [original data producer(s)]. UK Data Service. SN: 4871,

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Subject Categories

Social and occupational mobility - Social stratification and groupings


Abstract copyright UK Data Service and data collection copyright owner.

The 'Affluent Worker' project was undertaken to test empirically the thesis of working class embourgeoisement. The research studied the attitudes and behaviour of high wage earners in three mass or continous flow companies. During 1961-1962, married, male workers from three Luton factories (Vauxhall, Skefco and Laporte) were firstly interviewed at work and then, again, at home with their wives. Additionally, a sample of middle-class white-collar workers from the same companies were interviewed only at home.

This qualitative data collection comprises a digitised subset of the Luton study interviews, (see below for details of the full collection). For this subset, 30 married male Vauxhall workers' completed questionnaires were selected from boxes 01 and 02 from the full collection, as the handwriting on the original papers was legible, and follow-up home interviews were available as well as the initial workplace interview. The resulting data have been collated into tabular form, within an MS Access database. The tables replicate the structure and variables of the questionnaires used in the original study. Street, place and personal names were standardised by the original investigators, and care has been taken to retain original spellings. The subset database therefore contains a total of 60 interviews, each with 464 variables. This research formed part of a wider ESRC project Living Standards, social identities and the working class in England, c.1945-c.1970.

The full Affluent Worker data collection (including a set of interviews conducted in Cambridge as a pilot prior to the main Luton study) is held at the National Social Policy and Social Change Archive, part of the Albert Sloman Library Special Collections, based at the University of Essex. The materials are paper based and authorised copies are permitted as copyright is retained by the University of Essex. Consultation is by appointment only.
Main Topics:
Social attitudes, family life, social mobility, employment, lifestyle, education, social class.

Coverage, universe, methodology

Time period: 1961 - 1962
Dates of fieldwork: The original interviews were conducted in 1961-1962. The database was compiled during July-August 2007.
Country: England
Geography: Luton
Spatial units: No spatial unit
Observation units: Individuals
Kind of data: Textual data
Individual (micro) level
semi-structured questionnaires and transcription of hand-written notes.
Universe: Subnational
Male workers from a Luton factory and their wives, 1961-1962
Time dimensions: Cross-sectional (one-time) study
Sampling procedures: Purposive selection/case studies
Number of units: 30 respondents interviewed twice: total of 60 interviews.
Method of data collection: Face-to-face interview; Transcription of existing materials
Textual data; Individual (micro) level;semi-structured questionnaires and transcription of hand-written notes.
Weighting: Not applicable

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Administrative and access information

Date of release:
First edition: 07 December 2009
Copyright: Copyright S. Todd
Access conditions: The depositor has specified that registration is required and standard conditions of use apply. The depositor may be informed about usage. See terms and conditions for further information.
Availability: UK Data Service
Contact: Get in touch


Title File Name Size (KB)
User Guide 4871uguide.pdf 761
UKDA Data Dictionary 4871_table_and_variable_information.pdf 1432
Study information and citation UKDA_Study_4871_Information.htm 6
READ File read4871.htm 3


View publications... Hide publications...

By principal investigator(s):
Goldthorpe, J.H. et al. (1968) Political attitudes and behaviour, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-07204-2

Goldthorpe, J.H. et al. (1969) The affluent worker in the class structure, London: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-09533-6

Resulting from secondary analysis:
Devine, F. (1992) Affluent worker revisited: privatism and the working class, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. ISBN 0-748-60380-8

Cowan, D. (2018) 'Modern parenting and the uses of childcare advice in post-war England', Social History, 43(3) (August).


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