Risky behaviour and social activities: Research Report DCSF-RR173

Andreas Cebulla, Wojtek Tomaszewskia

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned reportpeer-review


The risky and risk-seeking behaviour of young people has long been of concern to policy makers given the influence it can have on young people’s education and other longer-term outcomes (Lindberg et al. 2000, DfES 2005, ACMD, 2006). More recently the topic has gained added attention in the light of increased reporting of young people’s anti-social behaviour (Cabinet Office 2007; House of Commons 2007; DCSF 2007). However, there is still a lack of robust quantitative evidence on patterns of risky behaviours among young people and how such behaviours impact on young people’s outcomes both during and after compulsory education.

This study explored young people’s involvement in risky behaviour during secondary school. It also looked at social activities that young people engage in, and how these may prevent or reduce risky behaviour. It was not possible to analyse the effect of activities that are considered to be ‘positive’ from a policy perspective (DCLG 2008/09). These are ‘organised and structured group activities led by an adult outside school lessons, such as sports, arts or a youth group’. This is because the LSYPE does not elicit the necessary, detailed information about the delivery and content of young people’s activities. As a result we have been constrained in the extent to which we have been able to identify activities that could be termed ‘positive’ in a policy sense, and care should be taken when considering the implications of findings in this respect.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherDepartment for Children, Schools and Families
Commissioning bodyUnited Kingdom. Department for Children, Schools and Families
Number of pages74
ISBN (Print)978 1 84775 558 2
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2009
Externally publishedYes


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