COVID-19: Updates on library services and operations.

America's social health [electronic resource] : putting social issues back on the public agenda /
Marque-Luisa Miringoff and Sandra Opdycke.
Armonk, N.Y. : M.E. Sharpe, c2008.
255 p. : ill. ; 23 cm.
0765616734 (cloth : alk. paper), 9780765616739 (cloth : alk. paper)
More Details
added author
Armonk, N.Y. : M.E. Sharpe, c2008.
0765616734 (cloth : alk. paper)
9780765616739 (cloth : alk. paper)
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references (p. 187-213) and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2008-09-01:
Why is it there are clear, regularly reported economic reports for the US, but none for social issues? Miringoff (Vassar College) and Opdycke (Institute for Innovation in Social Policy) argue for a social report, an index of social health with 16 indicators covering issues across the life cycle. The authors have a position: the federal government should spearhead a national report with clear and measurable indicators with built-in triggers for action. Developing effective social policy requires regularly collected data that is widely understood by the public. This text contains substantive as well as methodological material. Readers see indexes developed by other countries and non-profits. Topics include affordable housing, infant mortality, unemployment, and others. The work is comparative, using 1970 (considered high in social well-being) as a base year. The GDP has risen while social welfare has declined; US infant mortality rates have improved, but 37 other countries do better; medical insurance has become less accessible. Miringoff and Opdycke provide practical suggestions for greater visibility, such as a social health page for newspapers. The authors neglect, however, political desire; many Americans reject improving social welfare. A readable book for studies in social policy, political science, and social work. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above. S. D. Borchert emerita, Lake Erie College
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, September 2008
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Main Description
Calling for a fundamental change in the focus of public policy in America, this book paints a vivid portrait of the nation's social health. Miringoff and Opdycke clearly show that social progress has stalled and the country's energies need to be directed at critical domestic issues in the years ahead. The authors propose a new agenda for monitoring America's social well-being built around sixteen key indicators of American life, such as infant mortality, teenage suicide, health insurance coverage, and affordable housing. They maintain that social conditions, like economic conditions, must be constantly monitored in order to have a clear sense of how we are doing as a society. The book builds on the work of the Institute for Innovation in Social Policy and argues that there needs to be a greater visibility for social issues--and a closer link between social reporting and public action--to better address the nation's social problems. It considers the critical role of the media in advancing public understanding of social issues, and examines important advances in the community indicators movement and international social reporting. Eye-opening and compelling, the book is a provocative centerpiece for policy debates and national initiatives on today's crucial domestic concerns.
Table of Contents
Social Reporting in American Life
We Can Do Better: Toward a New Public Dialogue on Social Health
Shaping Everyday Discourse: The News Media and Social Issues
Social Reports: Institutionalizing the Reporting of Social Indicators
Measuring Social Health: The Index of Social Health and the National Survey of Social Health
A Closer Look: Key Indicators of Social Health
Social Indicators for Children
Infant Mortality
Child Poverty
Child Abuse
Social Indicators for Youth
Teenage Suicide
Teenage Drug Abuse
High School Dropouts
Social Indicators for Adults
Health Insurance Coverage
Social Indicators
Poverty, Ages 65 and Over
Out-of-Pocket Health Costs, Ages 65 and Over
Social Indicators for all Ages
Alcohol-related Traffic Fatalities
Food Stamp Coverage
Affordable Housing
Income Inequality
List of Graphs and Tables
Selected Social Indicator Data Over Time
Technical Note on the Index of Social Health
Technical Note on National Survey of Social Health
About the Institute/About the Authors
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

This information is provided by a service that aggregates data from review sources and other sources that are often consulted by libraries, and readers. The University does not edit this information and merely includes it as a convenience for users. It does not warrant that reviews are accurate. As with any review users should approach reviews critically and where deemed necessary should consult multiple review sources. Any concerns or questions about particular reviews should be directed to the reviewer and/or publisher.

  link to old catalogue

Report a problem