What does this study entail?
Why is the gap in social, behavioural, and financial outcomes between individuals from higher and lower social strata increasing over time? Why are family ties becoming more important in order to be successful in life? How can welfare policies help to reduce social inequality in a given society? This master programme offers insights into the causes and consequences of social and wealth inequality and sheds light on ways in which social policies can reduce it.
At the local, national and global levels, an intense period of social transformation and fragmentation can be observed. Catchphrases such as detraditionalisation, globalisation, neo-liberalization and automation involve real transformations of work and family life, of cities and states, and of citizens’ entitlements and international mobilities. Certainties in work are increasingly being replaced by uncertainties in the course of flexibilisation. Migration has changed the face and structure of both cities and families whereas new technologies transform both work and urban government. These social transformations have led to growing social inequalities across countries in the world. Within this context, scientists, politicians and policymakers realise that it is vital to gain a better understanding of social inequalities. It enables them to address these issues.
Is this the right programme for you?
In this society studies programme, we want to understand the complex interplay between social structure, family environment and individual behaviour. Therefore, it is important to bridge divisions between disciplines. This provides a detailed understanding of the ways in which social inequality manifests itself across diverse communities and contexts. Both at the national and international level.
Due to the unique interdisciplinary approach, you will learn to answer questions like:
- What has been the impact of the recent economic crisis on individuals' living and working conditions, their family and career choices, and on social and wealth inequalities?
- How does the interaction between markets (e.g. availability, quality, and cost of services) and states (e.g. social policies and national laws) shape family experiences and social inequalities?
- What is the impact of changes on the macro-level (e.g. policy changes such as those aiming at higher levels of individual responsibility; parental leave) on individual life courses and outcomes (e.g. employment, health, and socioeconomic status)?
- How can policies and institutions produce, maintain, mitigate, or exacerbate social inequalities?