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Employment, Education and Stratification

This research strand examines processes generating inequality and how structured inequality affects social cohesion and well-being in Ireland and Europe. A longitudinal perspective as well as a keen interest in contemporary social change is central for this research cluster.

Currently, a key interest is the study of health outcomes from a stratification perspective and the department is involved in major research programmes such as the Longitudinal Study of Child Health and Well-Being and Trends in Socio-economic Differentials in Mortality 1984 to 2008 (Richard Layte). Other foci of this cluster include the adaptation of education systems to the challenges of an increasingly diversified and globalised society (Daniel Faas), curriculum design and development (Daniel Faas), and research on labour market processes and their regulation (Camilla Devitt, Elaine Moriarty, Peter Mühlau) continuing a long-standing tradition of employment research in the department. This research is funded by a variety of national and European programmes (please see the MERC website for details on current research projects).


Recent publications arising from this research cluster include:

  • Devitt, C. (2010) ‘The migrant worker factor in labour market policy reform’, European Journal of Industrial Relations 16(3): 259-275
  • Faas, D., Hajisoteriou, C. and Angelides, P. (2014) ‘Intercultural education in Europe: Policies, practices and trends’, British Educational Research Journal 40(2): 300-318
  • Layte, R. and Wheelan, C. (2014) ‘Who feels inferior? A test of the status anxiety hypothesis of social inequalities in health’, European Sociological Review 30(4): 525-535
  • Layte, R. (2012) ‘The Association Between Income Inequality and Mental Health: Testing Status Anxiety, Social Capital, and Neo-Materialist Explanations’ European Sociological Review 28(4): 498-511
  • Moriarty, E., Wickham, J., Krings, T., Salamonska, J., Bobek, A. (2012) ‘Taking on almost everyone? Migrant and Employer Recruitment Strategies in a Booming Labour Market’, International Journal of Human Resource Management 23(9): 1871-1887
  • Mühlau, P. (2014) ‘Squeezed Middle Social Class and Perceived Financial Hardship in Ireland 2002-2012’, Economic and Social Review)