Mid-term Conference of ESA RN21: “Quantitative Approaches to Analyzing Social Change”

The ESA Research Network 21 Quantitative Methods announces its midterm conference 2020 about “Quantitative Approaches to Analyzing Social Change” on 8-10 October 2020 at the University of Lucerne and launches a call for papers and sessions. A panel in cooperation with EVS and ESS will focus on European surveys. Among the confirmed keynote speakers, also Vera Lomazzi, Secretary of the Executive Committee of EVS.

Over the last decade, Europe has witnessed deep impacts of the economic crisis as well as ongoing challenges concerning refugees and migrant integration. In addition, new challenges are connected with climate change, labour market developments, processes of digitalization, the rise of populism, demographic changes and unknown consequences of the Brexit. Are such social problems and conflicts connected with long-lasting societal changes? How and why do societies change in cultural, economic or political respect? What are the driving forces of social change? Is it possible to identify causal mechanisms to explain these changes?

This mid-term conference aims to raise the methodological potentials and challenges of quantitative research of social change and welcomes papers and sessions about the following topics, which are of course by no means exhaustive:

  1. Data collection: Problems and solutions of longitudinal data collection to analyze social change;
  2. Statistical approaches: Comparison of methodological boundaries, pros and cons of different statistical methods for longitudinal data to identify and explain social change (e.g. fixed
    effects panel regression, latent growth curve models, multilevel models, cross-lagged models, continuous time models etc.);
  3. Experimental and quasi-experimental designs to analyze social change;
  4. Big Data methods: Possibilities and problems of the application of new emerging digital methods to analyze social change;
  5. Computer simulation and modeling of social change;
  6. Cross-national studies: How can we make use of cross-national surveys to analyze social change in Europe and how do we define adequate units of analysis? This session will be organized in cooperation with ESS and EVS (see information below)
  7. Substantive contributions to the analysis of social change in different fields of Sociology (e.g. environmental sociology, ethnocentrism and populism research, quality of life, social indicators, political and social trust, etc.);
  8. „Award session“: Best Paper Young Researcher Award (see information below)
  9. General session on various methodological topics

Confirmed Joint Session: „European Surveys Panel“ Organized together with European Values Study (EVS) and European Social Survey (ESS).
Please consider to submit your papers using ESS and/or EVS data!

Confirmed keynote speakers:
• Prof. Dr. Matthias Egger, University of Bern, President of the Swiss National Science Foundation
• Prof. Dr. Manuel Völkle, Humboldt University of Berlin
• Prof. Dr. Rory Fitzgerald, City University, Director of ESS ERIC
• Dr. Vera Lomazzi, Senior Researcher at GESIS, Member/Secretary of the Executive Committee of the European Values Study

Important Dates

Abstract/session proposal submission: February 6th, 2020 – March 31st, 2020

Information about accepted papers/sessions: End of April 2020

Full paper submission for Young Researcher Award: August 31st, 2020

Conference: October 9th – 10th, 2020      

Welcome Reception: October 8th, 2020

Venue: University of Lucerne, Switzerland

Up-to-date information available on the ESA-RN21 event webpage.