Course Catalog

Study Program WiSe 2021/2022

Soziologie und Sozialforschung, M.A.

Wahlbereich - General Studies

Der Wahlbereich umfasst drei Bereiche: General Studies Angebot des Faches Soziologie, General Studies Angebot aus dem Fachbereich 8 Sozialwissenschaften, General Studies Angebot anderer Fächer. Die Angebote können fei gewählt werden.

General Studies Angebot des Faches Soziologie

Ergänzung und Vertiefung Spezieller Soziologien

Course numberTitle of eventLecturer
08-29-GS-20Work-Life Balance and Wellbeing (in English)
[Work-Life-Balance und Wohlbefinden]

Seminar (Teaching)

weekly (starts in week: 1) Thu. 12:00 - 14:00 UNICOM 3.3390 (SOCIUM - Mary-Somerville-Str. 3) (2 Teaching hours per week)

This course provides an introduction to Quality of Life and Well-Being research, with the focus on Work-Life Balance (WLB). WLB has emerged as an important aspect of quality of life in European societies over the last decades. There are rising expectations among working people to be able to participate in employment and care and to have more time for leisure, friends, and family life. Yet, the pressure and intensity of work demands are increasing as well as the number of insecure and precarious jobs. In this course, we will review current trends in employment in Europe and theories that address employment relations, work-family interface and work-life balance.

Prof. Sonja Drobnic
08-29-GS-23Gender Inequality and Stratification (in English)
[Geschlechterungleichheit und soziale Ungleichheit]

Seminar (Teaching)

weekly (starts in week: 1) Thu. 08:00 - 10:00 UNICOM 3.0210 Seminarraum 2 (2 Teaching hours per week)

This seminar will address the relationship between social class and gender-based forms of stratification in modern societies and in historical perspective. Overall, the question of interest is why the inequalities at the intersection of class and gender in paid and unpaid work persist across industrialized societies despite some impressive policy achievements over the past half century. The primary literature source will be the book “Gender-Class Equality in Political Economies”. In this book, Lynn Prince Cooke places gender inequality in a context that is historically shaped by the intersections of multiple inequalities and the particularities of six countries: Germany (East and West), Spain, Australia, the UK and the US. Gender-class inequalities persist in paid work hours, wages, and the division of housework. The study shows how values, choices, and behaviors of individual men and women in various national contexts are enabled and constrained by state policies that effectively structure relative group advantage and disadvantage from birth through old age.

Prof. Sonja Drobnic
08-29-GS-27Digital Platforms and Society (in English)
[Digitale Plattformen und Gesellschaft]

Seminar (Teaching)

weekly (starts in week: 1) Tue. 12:00 - 14:00 (2 Teaching hours per week)

Digital platforms are mediating ever more areas of social life. Platforms organize how we make and stay in contact with friends or find intimate partners, they curate our cultural experiences and regulate the presentation of self, they organize work and cultivate consumption. Platforms, however, are not only mediators. They are also observers and valuators. While we live our lives on platforms, algorithms observe our behavior, calculate our preferences and make decisions that influence our life chances, from suggesting potential partners to exluding content or even users from these platforms. In this seminar, we will take a close look at the ways in which platforms transform contemporary society and interpret them drawing on sociological theory and theories of society. Readings and discussions in class will be in English; active participation is expected.

Preparatory readings:

Bucher, T. (2018). If…then: Algorithmic power and politics. New York: Oxford University Press.
Burrell, J., & Fourcade, M. (2021). The society of algorithms. Annual Review of Sociology, 47, 23.21-23.25.
van Dijck, J., Poell, T., & de Waal, M. (2018). The platform society. Public values in a connective world. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Prof. Dr. Thorsten Peetz
08-350-M1-3Digital transformation, labor markets and skill formation in different countries (in English)

Seminar (Teaching)
ECTS: 3-6

Additional dates:
Thu. 21.10.21 12:00 - 14:00 online via zoom
Thu. 11.11.21 12:00 - 16:00
Thu. 09.12.21 12:00 - 18:00 online
Thu. 16.12.21 12:00 - 18:00
Thu. 13.01.22 12:00 - 18:00 online
Thu. 20.01.22 12:00 - 16:00

Digital technologies increasingly affect the content of individual jobs as well the structure of employment in European labor markets. While it is often argued that highly skilled workers benefit from increasing demand for their expertise as it cannot easily be replaced by IT solutions, there is growing concern regarding the future of medium-skilled jobs, often performed in established sectors that provide stable and decently paid jobs. At the same time, digital change can lead to a further flexibilization of work by way of an increasing role of online platforms, questioning the very notion of employment relationships and increasing competition for paid jobs. This seminar will disentangle the many aspects of digital change and their role in shaping jobs and skills requirements. It pays particular attention to the capacities of different welfare states and training systems to adapt so that transitions to jobs less at risk of automation can be achieved. This has major implications for vocational training, adult learning and labor market policies, often defined as the main branches of social investment.
Important notes:
The seminar takes place on 21 October, 11 November, 9 and 16 December, 13 and 20 January, with alternating online and offline sessions.
21 October (12-14h), 9 December (12-18h) and 13 January (12-18h) are online, 11 November (12-16h), 16 December (12-18h) and 20 January (12-16h) are in-person at Socium.
There will be short individual zoom talks before the first session (i.e. in mid-October).
Main requirements are active participation in the seminar, the introduction into the topic of one session, and a term paper.

Prof. Dr. Werner Eichhorst

Praxisrelevanz und Berufsorientierung

Course numberTitle of eventLecturer
08-29-GS-42Acting Socially Sustainable in Organisations – Sociology Meets Psychology Part 1: Postmodern Issues (in English)
Sozial nachhaltiges Handeln in Organisationen – Soziologie trifft Psychologie Teil 1: Postmoderne Problemlagen]

Seminar (Teaching)
ECTS: 3/6

fortnightly (starts in week: 2) Tue. 16:00 - 20:00 SFG 1010 (2 Teaching hours per week)

“The workplace is the most important environment for most people’s health, whether it is a home, office, factory or forest.” (Kjellström 2007)

“Social” sustainability is one of three global goals noted in the Rio Convention 1992 by the UN World Commission of Environment and Development. Economic sustainability is a booster of change for the modern organisation; ecological sustainability remains a constant task, while social sustainability is less regarded in the everyday workplace. Statistics since 2005 show alarming figures concerning the well-being and health of working people world wide. Therefore, it is important to understand how organisational structures and the individual’s processing and coping are interlinked.
This training-seminar is bridging sociological and psychological knowledge, focussing on concepts that support an understanding of how organisations and their role actors can shape a workplace “socially sustainable”. We will explore the psychological effects of the quality of a social climate, in order to understand social vulnerability. We scrutinize effects of socially anti-sustainable workplaces marked by problems as work addiction, burnout and mobbing, and sustainability supporting approaches like occupational health management, work-life-blending, and how to deal with digital stress. Ethics and responsibilities become apparent.
English is used as a lingua franca; effects of this setting are part of the reflection within the training setting. Students are supported to express themselves, didactically and by the lecturer. The interactive training-setting combines theoretical and practical elements,. Students should be willing to participate actively and in a reflective manner.
Beside interchangeable contents, the “how” is essential for all parts of this training seminar: students learn process planning, group moderation, use of Metaplan techniques, and other demands typical in the organisational practice.

Open for 1st semester students and above, recommended for Sociology Bachelor students before their internship and thesis, as well as for Master students. Open to students of other faculties. As a training seminar limited to 20 participants.

2 SWS: Fortnightly, starting in the 2nd week of the term: Tuesdays 4-7 pm; 3 hours (s.t.!). Limited to 20 participants, therefore please register reliable via Stud.IP for your participation. After the start workshop, this training-group will be closed.
[In case the seminar must be held online: participation only with camera turned on!]

Hämäläinen, Riitta (2006). Workplace Health Promotion in Europe. Finnish Institute of Occupational Health.
Meyerhuber, Sylke (2014). Trust and Time in Reorganisations and the Role of Middle Managers. In Guido Becke, Mindful Change in Times of Permanent Reorganisation – Organizational, Institutional and Sustainability Perspectives. Heidelberg New York London: Springer, 147-166.
Pongratz, Hans & Voß, Günter (2001). From Employee to ‘Entreployee’ – Towards a ‘Self-Entrepreneurical’ work force? In: SOWI – Sozialwissenschaftliche Informationen, 2001, pp. 42-52.

Performance requirement for 6 CP (ECTS)
Preparation of an interactive workshop and exposition in small groups.

Dr. Sylke Meyerhuber