Welcome to the Chair of General Sociology at the University of Mannheim!
Research at the chair follows the approach of a theory-guided systematically, empirically, and methodologically controlled sociology based upon the rules of an analytical philosophy of science and of Critical Rationalism. This approach is adopted in different content fields, reassessed, and further developed. Theoretical and methodological works serve as foundations for empirical projects whose findings are in turn integrated into theoretical and methodological considerations. Central to the approach is the concept of an explanatory sociology.
Comparison and integration of various sociological theory-approaches from the perspective of an explanatory sociology. Development and examination of (formal) theoretical models for selected content-specific sociological problems.
Methodology of the Social Sciences
Discussion of basic methodological problems in the social sciences and development of solutions to overcome (traditional) issues (for example, the differences between explaining and understanding, quantitative and qualitative methods, action and structure, actor- and system-perspectives, emergence and reduction).
Theory of Action
Development and empirical examination of a comprehensive theory of action integrating different approaches and “types” of action from the fields of sociology, economics, and (social-) psychology: the Model of Frame-Selection (MFS; as an advancement and formalization particularly of the “dual-process-theories” known from cognitive social psychology).
Migration and Integration
Development and empirical application of models of migration decisions, individual and social integration in the course of international migration, the emergence of ethnic inequalities and ethnic differentiations.
The empirical questions are the focus of various research projects at the Mannheim Centre for European Social Research (Mannheimer Zentrum für Europäische Sozialforschung, MZES).