Nordic Centre of Excellence:
Reassessing the Nordic
Bjørn Hvinden +4722541217
Viggo Nordvik +4722541269
Mi Ah Schøyen +4722541286
Call for papers
The conference "Social inequality and mobility in the life-course: Causes and consequences of social stratification" will take place July 7-9 2011 at the Mannheim Centre for European Social Research, in Mannheim, Germany.
The causes and consequences of social inequality have been hot issues among social scientists of various disciplines for several decades. On the one hand, we find economic growth and increasing wealth levels, accompanied by educational expansion and high (absolute) mobility rates. On the other hand, contemporary research suggests that educational and occupational stratification largely seem to be resistant to these changes. Given these conflicting developments, examining the structures and consequences of social inequalities in modern societies thus remains among the most challenging questions in the social sciences.
Alongside the dimensions of educational and occupational careers, the international conference will bring together scientists to present new approaches and empirical evidence on the causes and consequences of social inequality and mobility.
Regarding causation, we seek insight into the role of institutional structures (e.g. preschool and educational systems, labour markets and policy) but also of personal attributes or family background for social status outcomes like educational attainment or occupational status. Key questions include:
• What are the long-term influences of early childhood conditions and educational attainment on social status and other life course outcomes like family transitions, social participation and retirement?
• How can social inequalities be reduced through institutional arrangements like the early childhood care, educational systems or welfare systems? How do individuals use their resources or compensate a lack of resources in order to secure or improve their social status?
As to consequences, we are interested in those areas of life that can be affected by educational attainment, occupational status or mobility, like family transitions, cultural, social and political participation. As social inequality is relevant in all stages of the life course and across diverse areas of life, we intend to cover all periods in the life course from pre-school, educational and occupational careers to retirement and old age:
• In which way do inequalities in early stages determine inequality in later life?
• How do educational and material resources accumulated in the life course help to prevent undesirable occurrences, e.g. unemployment, precarity, poverty, or status demotion?
• How can intergenerational transfers of resources affect individual outcomes like educational attainment, occupational status, family transitions or cultural, social and political participation?
First, we seek to develop new perspectives in stratification research by linking different aspects of social inequality and by connecting various disciplines within the social sciences. We aim to stimulate interdisciplinary exchange and encourage researchers from various fields within social sciences to participate.
Second, we are planning to assemble a printed volume of the contributions with a renowned publisher and therefore strive to select participants who are prepared to provide paper drafts before and publish their work within short time after the conference.
We invite social scientists to contribute to the conference. Papers should focus on one of the following topics regarding social stratification:
• Early childhood and pre-school education
• General secondary and tertiary education
• Vocational education and lifelong learning
• Labour markets and occupational careers
• Intergenerational transfer of resources and family transitions
• Social inequality in old age and retirement
• Social inequality and social participation
Participants apply for the conference by submitting an extended abstracts of about 2 pages (not more than 1000 words). Please cover key questions, theoretical issues, methods and some (preliminary) results.
Closing date for abstract submission: 10th April 2011
Information about acceptance of the paper: 20th April 2011
First draft of your paper: 30th June 2011
After the conference you will get a detailed review of your paper and get some time to prepare your manuscript for publication.
Conference Fees and Grants:
There will be a conference fee of 60 Euro. Due to generous funding of the Mannheim Centre for European Social Research we are able to provide free hotel-accommodation for up to 3 nights per paper. As there will also be limited funds for travel costs, all participants are welcome to apply for a travel subsidy.
Organizing and Scientific Committee:
Nicole Biedinger, Dirk Hofäcker and Nicole Tieben, Mannheim Centre of European Social Research, 68131 Mannheim, Germany.
The conference will take place at the Mannheim Centre for European Social Research of University of Mannheim in Germany (www.mzes.uni-mannheim.de). The conference will take place over three days (welcome Thursday 7th at about 2pm, farewell on Saturday 9th at about 1pm) and include paper presentations on the above topics. There will be no parallel sessions. Conference language will be English.
Please apply via the conference homepage: http://www.mzes.uni-mannheim.de/konf/simlife/