Social Mobility and Life Course Trajectory: Combining Biographical Approach and Mass Survey Data

Monday, 11 July 2016: 14:15
Location: Seminarraum Geschichte 1 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Victoria SEMENOVA, Institute of Sociology Russian Academy of Science, Russia, Russian Academic Humanitarian University, Russia
The paper deals with the problem of combining biographical life course data and mass survey social mobility data in social mobility research. In order to deal with this the author will stop on the notion of subjective social mobility as a focus of working in this dimension. This approach helps to view the problematics of social mobility from micro-focus as individual or group attitude towards mobility in global society.

While demonstrating the results of empirical data from Russia received by intergenerational comparative mass survey combined with biographical data on the same age cohorts,  the paper will stop on the micro/macro differences in understanding and experiencing mobility in its different dimensions which are more vividly seen in marginal groups then in high status groups. The low status individuals see social mobility more as private space movements and achievements (for example, as  family status mobility or settle-type mobility) then high status individuals more confirm traditional-normative understanding of mobility.

Moreover in empirical data there appeared some new tendencies in perceptions of social mobility on individual level  which could be discussed as first-hand hypotheses, such as geographical mobility, tendency to 'stable trajectory' or immobility, and horizontal mobility which enrich and change our traditional understanding of social mobility as a classical sociological term.

The special attention will be devoted to methodological  aspect of the empirical results: the problem of combining biographical and survey data on mobility in several generations approach: field research problem, interviewee attitudes, the 'the language on mobility' in everyday life and on scientific level.