The top echelons of Scottish society are dominated by an elite group of people who attended private schools and the best universities, according to a new study which warns that people from poorer backgrounds are being prevented from reaching the top of their chosen professions by a “class ceiling”. Many of the top professions in Scotland are dominated by privileged people in much the same way as the rest of the UK, busting the “myth” that the country is inherently fairer and does not have a problem with social mobility, the Elitist Scotland? report concludes.
“The lack of people from ordinary social backgrounds at the top of Scottish society indicates that a lot of talent is going to waste. Perhaps most importantly it is unfair that those with the talent from less advantaged backgrounds too often find a ‘class ceiling’ that prevents them from reaching the top of their chosen fields,” it adds.
Studying the backgrounds of almost 850 leaders in politics, business, the media and other areas of public life in Scotland, researchers at the Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission found that 45 per cent of senior judges were privately educated compared to less than 6 per cent of the country’s overall population.