Access to opportunity

Using people-centred evidence to shape policy strategy and implementation: New approaches to data analysis and stakeholder co-design from the Department of Social Services
Friday 27 July, 1115 – 1135


Tim Reddel
Department of Social Services

The Access to Opportunity Analytical Framework provides a method for better understanding disadvantage, especially for those at the bottom of the income distribution. Measures of social mobility or an analysis of income inequality alone do not provide all of the answers about the factors and pathways that most affect people’s outcomes, when they are important in their lives and what can be done about them.

Improving outcomes for these groups requires an increased understanding of what contributes to improved opportunity at various stages across the life span; whose opportunities are most constrained; and where there are gaps in supporting Australians who are most in need.
We have framed our thinking around access to opportunity with an overarching model of what leads to access to opportunity:
 Understanding the pathway to optimal individual capability;
 Identifying the key social, cultural and economic contexts (including family functioning) that affect people’s capability development; and
 Recognising the impact of external conditions that prevent people from finding work, having agency and connecting with others.