Sociology Research Programme: PARIS

PARIS : Participation in Society

Research in the VUA Department of Sociology is organized in the PARIS -PARticipation In Society- Research Program. PARIS covers a wide spectrum of social participation, including participation in education, labour market, family and social networks, voluntary organisations, and contentious and non-contentious political participation and prosocial behaviour. Our concerns are both with how social participation contributes to society (cohesion, inclusion) and the share people obtain in social distribution (inequality, exclusion).

Rather than adhering to a single theoretical framework, PARIS-researchers liberally employ a variety of theories and methods suited for the research problem they address. Research questions are derived from the social problems faced in the various realms of social participation, as well as from the unsolved puzzles of the sociological discipline. PARIS researchers apply methodological approaches ranging from large-scale quantitative to in-depth qualitative research strategies. The choice of a particular research method is driven by objectives and research questions of the projects as well as the competences of individual researchers.

PARIS research groups
PARIS research  groups bring together PARIS researchers with common research interests and expertise. Group seminars meet regularly and discuss ongoing work of researchers. Exchange between research groups is facilitated in monthly research colloquia in which new grants, publications and research methods are discussed.The five program leaders and the research manager meet monthly to discuss overall research policy issues (e.g. PhD progress, talent, data management). 

SILC (Social Inequality in the Life Course)
Research on in- and exclusion in socio-economic distribution processes from a life course perspective. How is participation in education, employment and income in young and middle adulthood affected by processes of modernization and globalization, and new forms of government regulation?

SoCA (Social Context of Aging)
Research on social functioning of older people in various social domains, in particular social networks (including family ties, informal support and care), loneliness, employment, and voluntary organizations. How do individual characteristics, aging and the societal context affect social functioning in later life? What are the consequences of older adult’s social functioning for other domains such as health and well-being? Differences in individual social functioning are studied in two broader social contexts. First, in the context of socioeconomic position, gender and migration. Second, in the context of cohorts and time period, which reflect the rapid changes in many domains in our society relevant to aging. The methodology used is largely quantitative and the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam (LASA) is at the center of their research.

SCC (Social Conflict and Change)
Research on participation in social movements, in particular participation in contentious politics (e.g. demonstrations). How is contentious political participation in society triggered by social change and inequality in late modern societies? 

IDI (Identities, Diversity and Inclusion)
Research on the struggles for participation and inclusion of individuals and groups sharing specific identities. How are feelings of in- and exclusion in local, national and global society affected by the interaction of identities and (normalizing) structure?

CPhS(The Center for Philanthropic Studies)
Research on all aspects of philanthropy, including charitable giving, foundation grants, blood and organ donations, corporate social responsibility, and volunteering. In a nutshell, research at the Center answers the question: "Who gives what, when, and why, and to what effect?"