Vier Nederlandse projecten gefinancierd in transnationaal NORFACE programma over sociale ongelijkheid gedurende de levensloop

7 juli 2017

Met 18 miljoen euro van het onderzoeksprogramma ‘Dynamics of Inequality Across the Life-course’ (DIAL) financiert NORFACE dertien transnationale onderzoeksprojecten die in 2017/2018 starten. Aan vier van deze projecten werken Nederlandse onderzoekers mee, die zullen onderzoeken hoe (on)gelijkheid tijdens levenslopen ontstaat door te kijken naar de impact van werkloosheid en echtscheiding de invloed van verschillen in taalvaardigheid en social-emotionele ontwikkeling bij jonge kinderen, keuzes in opleiding, werk en gezin en de interactie tussen genen en omgeving.

Transnationaal en interdisciplinair onderzoek voor de toekomst

NORFACE, een Europees network voor de sociale wetenschappen, heeft het onderzoeksprogramma ‘Dynamics of Inequality Across the Life-course’ ontwikkeld. Het doel van het programma is om fundamentele vragen over de dynamiek van sociale ongelijkheid gedurende diverse levensfasen en met betrekking tot diverse ongelijkheids- en identiteitsdimensies te vragen en te beantwoorden, en om mogelijkheden voor het verminderen van deze ongelijkheden vast te stellen. De dertien transnationale projecten benaderen dit relevante thema vanuit verschillende perspectieven en wetenschappelijke disciplines. De projecten hebben als doel om theoretisch en methodologisch innovatief onderzoek te produceren op het gebied van sociale ongelijkheid gedurende de levensloop, alsmede resultaten die relevant zijn voor stakeholders en beleidsmakers binnen Europa. Het programma ‘Dynamics of Inequality Across the Life-course’ wordt gefinancierd door de 19 NORFACE partners, de Zweedse onderzoeksraad Forte en de Europese Commissie.

Nederlandse projecten

Meer informatie over de vier Nederlandse projecten is hieronder te vinden. Meer informatie over alle geselecteerde projecten, het programma en NORFACE is op de NORFACE website te vinden.

CRITEVENTS: Critical Life Events and the Dynamics of Inequality: Risk, Vulnerability, and Cumulative DisadvantageDr T. Leopold, University of Amsterdam, Dr C. Monden, University of Oxford, Dr J. Härkönen, Stockholm University and Prof. D. Oesch, University of Lausanne

This project studies the impact of two critical life events – job loss and union dissolution – on the life trajectories of adults and their children. We distinguish between two pathways through which these events may produce an accumulation of inequality over the life course: risk and vulnerability. Risk refers
to social gradients in the likelihood of experiencing these events, whereas vulnerability refers to social gradients in the impact of these events on economic and noneconomic outcomes.

Our main objectives are to understand (1) how job loss and union dissolution contribute to the accumulation of (dis)advantage over the life course; (2) what mechanisms explain the (unequal) impact of these events; and (3) which work and family policies are effective in targeting these mechanisms in order to reduce inequality.

Consistent with the aims of the DIAL call, the proposed research will shed light on the causal links between critical life events and the dynamics of inequality. It will also inform policies that promote the life chances and well-being of disadvantaged groups in society.

Work will be conducted within five research groups, all of which will apply comparable designs to the analysis of survey data and register data in five countries: Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. Our data will link adults to their children.

We will create academic and policy impact by ongoing dissemination through journal articles, a special issue, conference presentations, and outreach activities to national and European policymakers and other stakeholders.

EQUALLIVES: Inequality, early adult life courses and economic outcomes at mid-life in comparative contextProf. S. Harkness, University of Bath, Prof. J.P. Erola, University of Turku, Prof. A.E. Fasang, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Dr T. Leopold, University of Amsterdam and Prof. M.M. Jaeger, University of Copenhagen

This innovative project adopts a holistic approach to understanding the dynamics of inequality across the life-course. We analyze how education, labor market and family choices interact to structure accumulated advantage and disadvantage over the life course. Using panel data from five EU countries for over 20 years and cutting-edge statistical methods, including multichannel sequence analysis, we take a comparative approach to exploring how cross-country economic and institutional differences affect inequality outcomes and life courses.

Early adulthood is a crucial period of transition where people face multiple choices - about education, jobs, partnerships and childbearing – determining future life. We focus on key turning points, examine their interrelation and explore the cumulative impact on individual and group inequalities. Focusing on
transitions during early adulthood, into education, jobs and family formation, we address the following project call themes: “Labor market and family trajectories and the growth of inequality,” “Early adult transitions into tertiary education, vocational training and economic activity” and “Early life influence and outcomes.”

The research team of the PI, four CIs, postdoctoral fellows and PGR students will meet regularly and provides appropriate leadership, skills, and capacity building.

Academic impact will be achieved by going beyond the state-of-the-art, the research producing new empirical findings and contributing to theory building. Potential for policy impact is high. We will establish early contact with key national and EU stakeholders and engage through meetings, the media, research briefings and social media.

GEIGHEI: Gene-Environment Interplay in the Generation of Health and Education InequalitiesDr J.L.W. van Kippersluis, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Dr P. Biroli, Universität Zürich and Dr S. Von Hinke, University of Bristol

We will examine how Genes and the Environment (GxE) interact to generate inequalities in education and health over the life course. We will go beyond the old nature versus nurture debate by testing two novel hypotheses: (i) children born into advantaged environments are better able to reach their genetically conditioned education potential, and (ii) a privileged environment protects against genetic susceptibility to risky health behaviour. Both hypotheses propose a GxE interplay that influences the transition from early childhood (theme 1) to adulthood (theme 2, 3) in periods that are critical to the generation of inequalities.

We innovate by combining methods from genetics and social science. Building on the discovery of genetic variants that exhibit robust associations with behavioural outcomes and the recent availability of large datasets with information on both environments and genes, we will grasp unprecedented opportunities to fill the gap in knowledge about the combined role of genes and environments in causing inequality. By taking account of the endogenous, multifaceted and dynamic nature of the environment, the research promises a sustained impact by identifying policy interventions that ameliorate inequalities. For example, we will test whether high-quality child care can overcome genetic disadvantage in educational attainment.

Four young core researchers with emerging track records in advancing understanding of inequalities in education and health will supervise junior researchers, and benefit from the committed support of world-leading experts in (i) the genetics of education, (ii) genetic epidemiology, (iii) (neuro-)biological psychology, (iv) socioeconomic health inequalities and (v) econometrics.

SEED: Social InEquality and its Effects on child Development: A study of birth cohorts in the UK, Germany and the NetherlandsProf. J.C. Law, Newcastle University, Dr M. Franken, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Dr J. von Maurice, Leibniz Institute for Educational Trajectories and Prof. S. Weinert, Universität Bamberg

Marked differences in early child development (specifically oral language skills and socio-emotional development) have opened up before compulsory schooling begins. These manifest as social inequalities which, for many, persist through childhood and into work. SEED explores the mechanisms by which this happens by drawing on the best data from a range of different countries.

SEED is in “Early Life Influences and Outcomes”, linking into “Early adult transitions into tertiary education, vocational training and economic activity”, and will feed into European policy and OECD translational projects.

SEED has two principal objectives:

  • To identify the mechanisms through which changing social inequalities impact on children’s oral language and socio-emotional development;
  • To identify the implications that these evolving social disparities have for patterns of performance at school age and beyond into adolescence and adulthood.

We utilise nationally representative cohort data in the three applicant countries (UK, Netherlands & Germany). Such a pan European programme has never been attempted before, and is extended by complementary co-operation partner country analyses (US, Canada and Australia).

Led by PI James Law, the programme team is made up of senior, mid and early career researchers, from the the partner countries. It will be organised in 6 Work Packages. The team will meet at six monthly intervals, and will facilitate several researcher exchanges throughout the project lifecycle.

Bron: NWO