Youth Studies

Enhanced tools of comparative youth studies

The objective of this Working Group is to methodologically advance the field in comparative qualitative and mixed methods studies on youth. This will generate 1) advice on adequate comparative qualitative study designs and analysis protocols 2) robust techniques for mixed use of data and methods. This WG will promote mutual learning and the exchange of tools for doing mixed methods analysis combining large-scale comparative quantitative and qualitative data.

The first two meetings of the WG in Essen, Germany (2018) and at the MC meeting 2019 in Thessaloniki, Greece, underlined the necessity of multi-method approaches for studying young people, including case studies, geographical maps, quantitative analysis, and participant observation. The focus of the topics had been young people in all fields, policy engagement, work, subjective/objective poverty, technology and sports.

In the second year, the WG will advance to the synthesis of disciplinary knowledge of causes of cumulative disadvantages of young people, looking specifically at the methodology and at which kind of knowledge could be produce through specific methods. Special attention will be devoted to comparative methodology across countries; for this aim exchanges among researchers will be encouraged. 

In the following year, we will try to go beyond synthesized knowledge and to develop new methodologies based on mixed methods approach, or multimethod, and we will specifically focus on youth. Projects plans of publications will be developed.

This will help to identify specific mechanisms of cumulation of disadvantages that could be useful to design policies to prevent social risks and to offer more opportunities to young people. 

Inside the WG a specific reflection about how to combine different methodologies will be developed and shared among participants. Training schools and publications among participants will be encouraged. 


Università di Torino, Torino, Italy


University of Duisburg-Essen, Institute for Social Work and Social Policy, Essen, Germany

YOUNG IN WG4 meeting 09.-10.07.2022 in Amsterdam

Location: Hotel Casa Amsterdam Indirizzo: Eerste Ringdijkstraat 4, Oost, 1097 BC Amsterdam, Paesi Bassi

Aims of the meeting

Following previous WG4 on meetings, the aim of this meeting will be first to discuss the previous results on social exclusion of youth in Europe and planning future collaborations. Second, to finalise the WG4 outputs. In particular the working paper on methodological issue.

YOUNG IN WG 4 Meeting,  Madrid, September 13, 2021

Organisers (in alphabetical order):

Sonia Bertolini, University of Turin, Italy

Dirk Hofäcker, University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany

The situation of youth and possible political solutions to improve their situation represent a complex phenomenon, that can only be sufficiently addressed by the use of both quantitative and qualitative methodologies. On the one hand, it is important to gain representative knowledge about the situation of youth and its determinants from quantitative data. The increasing availability of longitudinal data increasingly allows for the analysis of such relationships from a causal perspective and by considering developments of longer timespans. At the same time, qualitative data can, on the one hand, help to better understand the situation of youth, e.g. by looking at individual perceptions and interpretations, motives etc. On the other hand, qualitative studies may also help to develop new and innovative. “Mixed methods” may, however, not necessarily be restricted to combining quantitative and qualitative approaches, but may also encompassing different methodologies within quantitative and/or qualitative research.

For both quantitative and qualitative methodologies, comparing results in youth research across countries presents a major challenge. How can, for example, the international variability in structural and cultural conditions be considered when conducting explicit cross-national research, or when bringing together evidence from different countries? A particular question is this respect is how institutional data at the (societal) macro-level and individual data at the micro-level can be considered in analyses.

At the WG4 meeting in Madrid, we aim to address both challenges. Contributions to our joint sessions are invited from members in- and outside the YOUNG_IN network to deepen the discussion on how to combine methods to study youth from a comparative perspective.

We welcome papers that address at least one of the following issues:

  1. Combining different methodologies
  • Contributions that discuss how quantitative and qualitative methodologies can be combined to better understand the situation of young people. These can be either methodological and epistemological contributions about mixed-method approaches in general or explicitly refer to issues of, for example, study design or measurement, using concrete examples.
  • Contributions that discuss how different quantitative or different qualitative methodologies can be combined to better understand the situation of young people. These can be either conceptual/theoretical or explicitly refer to issues of, for example, study design or measurement, using concrete examples.
  • Empirical contributions that demonstrate the application of different methodologies for studying youth using evidence from existing studies.
  1. Challenges of cross-national comparison
  • Conceptual/theoretical contributions that focus on the challenges in comparative youth research and possibilities how to overcome them. Contributions addressing challenges in quantitative, qualitative or mixed methods research are welcome.
  • Empirical contributions that demonstrate the application of cross-nationally comparative research on youth
  • Conceptual or empirical contributions that outline how macro data at the national level and individual level quantitative or qualitative data can be combined.

For participants that are not members of the COST Action CA17114, a limited number of travel grants is available. Please indicate when submitting your abstract whether you would like to apply for such a travel grant.

We aim to combine papers presented at the Madrid meeting in a joint publication on innovative methodologies in youth research. Paper presenters thus should, in principle, be willing to contribute to such a publication.

Please submit your abstract of max 300 words by July 27, 2021 to and

Programm: COST Action CA17114 YOUNG-IN Workshop

Old age security in the light of rising labour market uncertainty

13 November 2020, 9:30 – 16:30 CET

Online workshop

The link to the online seminar will be sent per email to interested participants.


9:30 – 11:00       Session I

  • The impact of discontinuity – How unemployment shapes pension outcomes in all three pension pillars

Dina Frommert (DRV Bund)

Comments: Ilari Ilmakunnas

  • How does self-employment affect the risk of poverty in old age? The role of pension systems for the self-employed in Europe

Julia Höppner (University of Kassel)

Comments: Ruta Braziene

  • Young low-educated workers and public pension commitments in the EU28 (2002-2018) – Mitigation or enforcement of poverty risks?

Traute Meyer (University of Southampton)

Comments: Sophia Fauser

11:00 – 11:30     Pause

 11:30 – 13:00     Session II

  • Employment among young Finns: the association between recent pension reforms and pension accumulation

Ilari Ilmakunnas & Kati Kuitto (Finnish Centre for Pensions)

Comments: Ellie Suh

  • Youth and Precarious employment across the Baltic States: Theoretical Explanations, Empirical Evidence and Social Policy Responses

Ruta Braziene (University of Vilnius)

Comments: Müge Gülmez

  • Fixed-term employment and housing outcomes in Germany: Investigating cumulative disadvantages

Sophia Fauser & Sonja Scheuring (University of Bamberg)

Comments: Walid Merouani

13:00 – 14:00     Lunch break

14:00 – 15:30     Session III

  • Can’t save or won’t save – the role of financial resilience in retirement saving among young British adults

Ellie Suh (University of Oxford)

Comments: Dina Frommert

  • Attitudes of young Turkish workers towards private pension plans

Müge Gülmez (Bogazici University)

Comments: Julia Höppner

  • Social Security Enrolment in Maghreb Countries: Who Is Excluded? Who Is Not Interested?

Walid Merouani (CREAD Alger/ CREM-CNRS-France)

Comments: Traute Meyer

15:30 – 15:45     Short break

 15:45 – 16:30     Discussion and planning of the book project