Affirmative action (known as positive discrimination in the United Kingdom and as employment equity in Canada and elsewhere) refers to policies that take factors including "race, color, religion, sex, or national origin" into consideration in order to benefit an underrepresented group "in areas of employment, education, and business". The concept of affirmative action was introduced in the early 1960s as a way to combat racial discrimination in the hiring process and, in 1967, the concept was expanded to include gender.
The nature of affirmative action policies varies from region to region. Some countries, such as India, use a quota system, whereby a certain percentage of jobs or school vacancies must be set aside for members of a race, caste or other protected group. In some other regions, specific quotas do not exist; instead, members of minorities are given preference in selection processes. Often, university scholarships are earmarked for members of a specific minority.
Social inequality refers to relational processes in society that have the effect of limiting or harming a group’s social status, social class, and social circle. Areas of social inequality include access to voting rights, freedom of speech and assembly, the extent of property rights and access to education, health care, quality housing, traveling, transportation, vacationing and other social goods and services. Apart from that it can also be seen in the quality of family and neighbourhood life, occupation, job satisfaction, and access to credit. If these economic divisions harden, they can lead to social inequality.
The reasons for social inequality can vary, but are often broad and far reaching. Social inequality can emerge through a society’s understanding of appropriate gender roles, or through the prevalence of social stereotyping. Social inequality can also be established through discriminatory legislation. Social inequalities exist between ethnic or religious groups, classes and countries making the concept of social inequality a global phenomenon. Social inequality is different from economic inequality, though the two are linked. Social inequality refers to disparities in the distribution of economic assets and income as well as between the overall quality and luxury of each person's existence within a society, while economic inequality is caused by the unequal accumulation of wealth; social inequality exists because the lack of wealth in certain areas prohibits these people from obtaining the same housing, health care, etc. as the wealthy, in societies where access to these social goods depends on wealth.
Education policy are the principles and government policy-making in educational sphere, as well as the collection of laws and rules that govern the operation of education systems.
Education occurs in many forms for many purposes through many institutions. Examples include early childhood education, kindergarten through to 12th grade, two and four year colleges or universities, graduate and professional education, adult education and job training. Therefore, education policy can directly affect the education people engage in at all ages.
Identity politics (sometimes known under the category of 'gender politics' but not exclusive to) are political arguments that focus upon the self-interest and perspectives of self-identified social interest groups and ways in which people's politics may be shaped by aspects of their identity through race, class, religion, gender, ethnicity, ideology, nation, sexual orientation, culture, currency, information preference, history, musical and/or literary genre, medical conditions, profession, hobby, or any other loosely correlated yet simple to intuit social organizations. Not all members of any given group are necessarily involved in identity politics. The practice has probably a long existence; but the explicit term and movements linked to it really came into being during the latter part of the 20th century. It can most notably be found in class movements, feminist movements, gay and lesbian movements, disability movements, ethnic movements and post colonial movements. But wherever it is found it is also open to wide debate and critique. Minority influence is a central component of identity politics. Minority influence is a form of social influence which takes place when a majority is being influenced to accept the beliefs or behavior of a minority. Unlike other forms of influence this usually involves a personal shift in private opinion. This personal shift in opinion is called conversion.
A minority group is a sociological category within a demographic. Rather than a relational "social group", as the term would indicate, the term refers to a category that is differentiated and defined by the social majority, that is, those who hold the majority of positions of social power in a society. The differentiation can be based on one or more observable human characteristics, including, for example, ethnicity, race, gender, wealth, health or sexual orientation. Usage of the term is applied to various situations and civilizations within history, despite its popular mis-association with a numerical, statistical minority. In the social sciences, the term "minority" is used to refer to categories of persons who hold few positions of social power.
The term "minority group" often occurs alongside a discourse of civil rights and collective rights which gained prominence in the 20th century. Members of minority groups are prone to different treatment in the countries and societies in which they live. This discrimination may be directly based on an individual's perceived membership of a minority group, without consideration of that individual's personal achievement. It may also occur indirectly, due to social structures that are not equally accessible to all. Activists campaigning on a range of issues may use the language of minority rights, including student rights, consumer rights and animal rights.
A social issue (also called a social problem or a social situation) is an issue that relates to society's perception of a person's personal lives. Different cultures have different perceptions and what may be "normal" behavior in one society may be a significant social issue in another society. Social issues are distinguished from economic issues. Some issues have both social and economic aspects, such as immigration. There are also issues that don't fall into either category, such as wars.
Thomas Paine, in Rights of Man and Common Sense, addresses man's duty to "allow the same rights to others as we allow ourselves". The failure to do so causes the birth of a social issue.
Algeria · Nigeria · Sudan · Ethiopia · Seychelles
Uganda · Zambia · Kenya · South Africa
Afghanistan · Pakistan · India
Nepal · Sri Lanka · Vietnam
China · Hong Kong · Macau · Taiwan
North Korea · South Korea · Japan
Malaysia · Singapore · Philippines · Thailand