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Cultural Sociology investigates the dynamics of culture in shaping human social life, focusing on how individuals (re)produce meaning, create boundaries between groups, and interact with cultural expressions within institutionalized settings. They explore various social phenomena using diverse research methods and collaborate with interdisciplinary research centers.
Cultural Sociology

How do people create status differences and maintain boundaries between groups? How do new genres appear in music? What is the role of emotions and culture in class room interactions? Clearly, at the cultural sociology programme group a wide variety of social phenomena is being studied. Also, a broad array of data and research methods and techniques is used in the programme group, such as observational data, network analysis, computer simulated modelling, various forms of interviewing, video-analysis, statistical modelling of very large N datasets, and Q-analysis.

The programme group Cultural Sociology studies culture in these two senses: the meaningful dimension of human life, as well as the cultural elements which human beings reproduce within, at least to some extent, institutionalized settings. Those two senses of culture are closely interconnected and cannot be studied in isolation.

Collaborations

Our projects
  • Onderwijsinterventies voor kansarme leerlingen

    SEPP (the Scalable Education Programs Partnership) brengt de expertise van academische onderzoekers, onderwijsbeleidsmakers en mensen uit de onderwijspraktijk bij elkaar met als doel om een ‘gereedschapskist’ van bewezen effectieve, schaalbare en potentieel complementaire onderwijsinterventies voor kansarme leerlingen (en hun verzorgers) te onderzoeken, verder te ontwikkelen en onder de aandacht te brengen. SEPP is in het leven geroepen door de Universiteit van Amsterdam.

    Dr. J. (Jurgen) Tijms

    Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences

    Programme group: Cultural Sociology

  • Group Violence

    The Group Violence research programme aims to understand how group behaviour affects the likelihood and severity of violence in public space. While the prevailing social scientific focus remains on individual perpetrators and background factors, the empirical reality of public violence is one of multiple attackers, multiple victims and multiple bystanders.

    The research proposed here furthers the study of violence with a novel theory that identifies how group behaviour affects the outcome of antagonistic situations – and with comparative empirical studies to test the theory.

    Dr. D. (Don) Weenink

    Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences

    Programme group: Cultural Sociology

  • Designing Rhythms for Social Resilience (DRSR)

    This research contributes to the humanities by an analysis of how people process their life experiences within cities, and also by examining how these experiences are increasingly being documented within urban data centers. The DRSR team will develop a methodology that integrates digital data and visual and physical rhythm analysis for enabling new design interventions in neighborhoods.

    Prof. dr. C.I.M. (Caroline) Nevejan

    Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences

    Programme group: Cultural Sociology

  • Markets, morals, and mass intimacy: How platformization transforms the global sex industry

    This project is the first systematic study of the digitization and platformization of sex work. With their low entry barriers, their live and interactive character, webcam platforms are among the sex industry’s fastest growing segments. According to critics platforms exploit and monopolize sex work, creating a global proletariat of performers.

    Proponents claim however that webcamming provides safety, autonomy and potentially high earnings for sex workers. But despite its multi-billion-dollar turnover and disputed social and economic impact, empirical knowledge of the industry is limited. Consequently, it operates largely under the radar of scholars, policy makers and the media.

    The main aim of this project is to analyze competition, working conditions and regulation within the industry. 

    Prof. dr. O.J.M. (Olav) Velthuis

    Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences

    Programme group: Cultural Sociology

    E. (Emilija) Jokubauskaitė

    Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences

    Programme group: Cultural Sociology

    H.M. (Hanne) Stegeman MSc

    Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences

    Programme group: Cultural Sociology

  • The Return of the Medici? The Global Rise of Private Museums for Contemporary Art

    Since 2000, over 200 private art museums have been established worldwide. This development is highly controversial: according to some they are neo-aristocratic institutions which translate economic into cultural inequality, while others argue that they democratize and support art, especially when government support is absent or declining.

    This project is the first to study the rise of private museums systematically. The aim is to understand how the formation of new global elites and their entry into cultural fields results in the formation of new institutions and the reconfiguration of these fields. 

    Prof. dr. O.J.M. (Olav) Velthuis

    Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences

    Programme group: Cultural Sociology

    A. (Andrea) Friedmann Rozenbaum MSc

    Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences

    Programme group: Cultural Sociology

    J. (Johannes) Aengenheyster

    Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences

    Programme group: Cultural Sociology

Programme group leaders

Dr. O. (Olga) Sezneva

Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences

Programme group: Cultural Sociology

Programme group staff