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Welfare State, Inequality and Quality of Life (BIGSSS)

PhD Graduate Program

Research in this program falls into three groups:

How are European welfare states being affected by globalization, Europeanization, labor market changes, labor market flexibilization, and new socio-economic and demographic patterns? ...
What impacts have changes in social policy had on social integration and inequality affected by globalization? How have inequalities in income, health, living conditions, education and other spheres of life changed over time? ...
How are changing social structures and welfare state reform affecting the quality of life? Is the quality of life as determined by both objective and subjective indicators of wellbeing on the decrease among the inhabitants of OECD countries? ...
Field Chairs: Prof. Dr. Karin Gottschall, Prof. Dr. Heinz Rothgang
Field Coordinator: Prof. Dr. Matthias Wingens
BIGSSS is structured in three thematic fields:

Bremen International Graduate School of Social Sciences integrates excellent areas of graduate education and research at the University of Bremen and Jacobs University into a synergetic inter-university institution designed to become an internationally competitive model of graduate education. BIGSSS’ guiding principles are education to excellence, quality assurance, and effective funding. It is supported by the German Excellence Initiative.


If you are interested in becoming a BIGSSS Predoctoral, PhD or a Post-Doctoral Fellow, please see the BIGSSS website to find all the essential information on admission requirements, financial support and application materials.

For more information regarding admissions to BIGSSS you may also contact our Admissions Officer:

admissions-officer [at]
+49 (0) 421 200 3956