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Project “Pathways to the Future”

A longitudinal study on the social integration of young people in Vienna

 Follow-up projects

The wide range of subjects and methods on which the departmental project focuses provides the basis for further research and doctoral projects, aimed at further investigating specific aspects of the social integration of young people in Vienna.

  • Youth and Social Inequality in Longitudinal Section. Interdisciplinary Analyses on the Reproduction and Transformation of Inequality in the Life Realities of Viennese Youth (J:Ung)

    Finding an independent social position as a central task of the life phase of youth is of fundamental importance for questions of social reproduction and transformation. This positioning process is characterized by a pluralization of life plans on the one hand and a persistence of cross-generational social inequality on the other. 

    Against this backdrop, the project focuses on how young people deal with these challenging social conditions and the associated processes of transformation and reproduction of social inequality. An interdisciplinary team, which combines educational and sociological perspectives as well as different thematic and methodological foci, is dedicated to this research concern.

    Data derived from the project “Pathways to the Future” by the Department of Sociology builds the basis for a secondary analysis in J:Ung, combining qualitative and quantitative analyses in order to work on individual research questions. The thematic focal points are the areas of ideas about the future (Malschinger), professional and educational biographies (Duncan) and political commitment (Danner).

    Austrian Academy of Sciences -
    Doc-team Fellowship for Michael Duncan and Paul Malschinger (Department of Sociology) in cooperation with Katharina Danner (Department of Educational Science)

    Project lead
    Jörg Flecker
    Veronika Wöhrer

    Projecet staff
    Michael Duncan
    Paul Malschinger
    Katharina Danner

    10/2022 - 09/2025

  • When dreams (do not) come true: professional aspirations and their chances of realisation with a focus on ethnicity and social position

    Based on the longitudinal study Pathways to the Future, which uses a mixed-methods approach, we investigate the professional aspirations of students attending so-called new secondary schools (Neue Mittelschule) in Vienna. More specifically, we examine how these aspirations differ according to the students’ ethnicity, social position and gender, how they can explain different educational pathways and positions in the labour market and how they influence educational and professional careers. In accordance with Bourdieu, it is assumed that, in the educational habitus, differences relating to what is perceived as desirable and worthwhile are group-specific. In addition, the methodological question arises as to how to reach and survey the comparatively vulnerable group of students attending a so-called new secondary school. The study aims at a differentiated understanding and an assessment of social inequality.

    Jubiläumsfonds der Österreichischen Nationalbank (OeNB)

    Project lead
    Susanne Vogl

    Project staff
    Franz Astleithner
    Raphaela Kogler

    11/2019 - 206/2022

  • The creation of action space(s) through young people’s leisure life practices - Bridging the gap between qualitative and quantitative research approaches

    Adolescence as a stage of life has become more diverse, but it is also shaped by insecurities and changing mechanisms of social reproduction. Against this background, this doctoral project explores to what extent adolescents are able to develop resources in their leisure time, which is an important area of socialisation besides family and school, to expand their scope of action. Based on theoretical literature and qualitative interviews, we identified dimensions that enable the assessment of these processes through quantitative standardised surveys. After an extensive pretest phase, the measuring instrument that was developed was used in the quantitative panel of the Pathways to the Future project. The analysis focuses on informal leisure contexts as these are less visible but of central importance for adolescents’ ability to act.

    uni:docs Fellowship Programme for Doctoral Candidates of the University of Vienna

    PhD candidate
    Barbara Mataloni