Aims of the FOR
The aim of the research unit (FOR 2723) is to substantially improve the understanding of the development of health inequalities at younger ages. Bringing together teams from various research backgrounds, the unit will create a cluster of excellence that will address the complexity of this research topic.
The FOR 2723 will explicitly go beyond previous research by a) applying a strict life stage approach that considers the particularities of the different life stages from birth to early adulthood and b) focussing on the interplay between young people and the institutional contexts in which they act.
The general research objectives are:
- To systematically review existing international evidence on the impact of different institutional contexts on health in general and on socioeconomic inequalities in health in particular from childhood to early adulthood.
- To empirically study whether and how characteristics of different institutional contexts in Germany are associated with the emergence of individual-level inequalities in health.
- To integrate findings from the different subprojects into a single and comprehensive theoretical model about the key mechanisms at individual and contextual levels.
Building upon reviews of the existing evidence, the FOR 2723 will mainly analyse secondary data in the first funding period. The subprojects will focus on the contexts that serve as major socialisation agents in society, such as the family, kindergarten, school, tertiary education/work as well as the health care system, which plays a key role for a healthy development.
The FOR 2723 combines explanatory factors and mechanisms at different levels of analysis and takes into account the specific explanations at the different life stages and institutional contexts. The research unit will substantially contribute to the implementation of an interdisciplinary multilevel perspective on health inequalities across the life course at the interface of sociology, social epidemiology and public health.