Our expertise and services are based on both academic and practical experience, and we take a long-term, interdisciplinary approach to our work. Our research activities are grouped in six subject areas.

Generational relationships

The ageing demographic, new family models and changes to mobility and employment patterns have long-term effects on the relationships between generations and in particular on the availability of care and support within family networks.

We are developing a knowledge base and social innovations to help meet the challenges associated with these changes. Our focus is on informal and professional care and support networks, on socio-political parameters and support measures and on state-subsidised and private care provisions.


Work, equal opportunities and diversity

Social security and work and closely linked. Fairness in the job market and responsible employers help individuals attain their career goals. Equal opportunities and diversity in business, education and career paths are of particular importance.

Our research topics include gender-specific career choices, life event-oriented human resource management, non-standardised incentive schemes and the prevention of bullying. Issues relating to social entrepreneurship, corporate social responsibility and managerial and social ethics also play an important role.


Safeguarding livelihoods and integration

Our focus in this research area is on the role of social security systems in safeguarding against risks in life. The core issues are the continued development of social security systems and the dynamics of poverty.

We analyse risk patterns in the fields of sickness, disability, age, family and children, employment and unemployment, accommodation and social exclusion. From this starting point, we also examine which measures enable people to safeguard their existence using their own resources and participate in society.


Organisation and quality of social services

Services in the field of social work and healthcare can be described as person-centred services that take place as a result of interaction between professionals and clients or patients.

We look at issues surrounding governance, quality management and quality assurance, competency improvement, and collaboration and networking in a range of research and development projects.


Healthcare provision and circumstances

Although the social security system covers health risks such as sickness and disability, the intended and unintended effects of socio-political reforms and measures are not always clear.

Our research in this area examines the effects of new social policy programmes on psychosocial health and also investigates stigmatisation, victimisation, care dependency and inequality in terms of healthcare. We also include the health of the professional service providers.


Development opportunities and risks in childhood and adolescence

When children and young people are protected and supported during their development, they acquire the abilities and the freedom that enable them to lead socially integrated and independent lives as adults. Conversely, there is a close link between a compromised childhood and poverty, a lack of education and poor health in adult life. Individual development is the result of a combination of nature and nurture.

The aim of this research focus is to understand the origins of problematic development processes in childhood and youth and their consequences and repercussions in later life. We are particularly interested in child protection activities and welfare services for children, adolescents and families.