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Research and the corresponding courses taught by the research group Social Stratification and Survey Methodology focus on the question of how individual preferences, values, attitudes and actions of individuals are shaped by social structures and vice versa: how do individuals influence the structures of modern societies by their actions. These analyses focus mainly on current social dynamics of the development of social inequalities, migration and displacement, prejudice and discrimination, but also on social threats. When analyzing these phenomena, we proceed in a strictly theory-driven manner and draw on theories and explanatory approaches from the social, economic and behavioral sciences. Our empirical studies generally build on large national and international cross-sectional and longitudinal data sets from the social and economic sciences. We always strive to develop the scope and quality of these data sets by applying innovative methods and researching them.

Currently, the most important research areas include:

  • Research into the effects of objective and subjective social inequalities and the increasing diversity of society on the behavior, preferences and fairness concepts of individuals;
  • the reasons and social relevance of subjective attitudes on social justice, and discriminatory attitudes towards individual social groups;
  • the analysis of hard-to-reach populations, such as migrants and refugees, using new data from innovative longitudinal surveys, and
  • improving the social scientific data base for research into social crisis, disasters and military threats.