This conference examines the interconnections between multi-local living arrangements and social mobility, with a particular focus on the intersections between social inequalities and multi-locality, the impact of multi-locality on social mobility, social inequalities in children’s experiences of multi-locality, and the methodological and ethical challenges of studying multi-locality through the lens of social inequalities.During this 2-days event, the following questions will be examined and discussed:Occupationally induced multi-locality has increased in many countries. There are several reasons for this. In addition to structural changes in the labor market, there are also profound social changes within partnerships and families. Against this background, the question arises as to the connection between multi-local living arrangements and social mobility. Is work-related multi-locality (still) a vehicle for social upward mobility, or is the avoidance of unpleasant spatial mobility/multi-locality rather a proof of high social positions? Who must be spatially mobile/multi-local under what conditions – and who can, in this sense, use spatial mobility/multi-locality as an opportunity?
We are also interested in the practices children and youth develop in multi-local contexts (including situations where they directly or indirectly experience multi-local living), tensions between children’s agency and power relations with adults, the micro-practices of resistance children and youth might engage in to influence their living conditions and family relationships, and how children and youth promote social bonds and identity in multi-local family arrangements.
Finally, what particular ethical and methodological challenges do researchers face when trying to involve participants placed in a vulnerable situation or that may be difficult to recruit, such as low income/low educated participants, children and youth, irregular and economic migrants, or families experiencing a high degree of tensions and conflicts? What are the strengths and limits of qualitative and/or quantitative methods that are multi-sited and/or involve several family members? How do researchers deal with ethical considerations regarding the use of (audio)visual material produced by vulnerable participants, including mental maps, photos, videos and drawings? How far should researchers go in anonymizing the results of their research with vulnerable participants?
Local organizing committee: Laura Merla (UCLouvain), Sarah Murru (UCLouvain) & Pierre Lannoy (ULB)
Scientific committee: Marco Alberio (UQAR), Matteo Colleoni (UNIMIB), Cédric Duchêne-Lacroix (University of Basel), Lenka Formánková (Czech Academy of Science), Pierre Lannoy (ULB), Laura Merla (UCLouvain), Tino Schlinzig (Technical University Dresden), and Heiko Rüger (Federal Institute for Population Research)
Keynote speaker: Lia Karsten, Associate professor in Urban Geographies, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
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