The 2017 Summer School on Longitudinal and Life Course Research, University of Zürich

Monday, August 21st to Friday, August 25th, 2017

Life course research is a burgeoning, interdisciplinary field of studies. It is characterized by theoretical approaches that reflect and inform diverse areas such as sociology, demography, epidemiology, economics, psychology, and social biology. It is also characterized by a set of commonly-used quantitative research methods, such as event-history analysis, multi-level modeling, and sequence analysis that span disciplinary boundaries.

The Summer School on Longitudinal and Life Course Research brings together scholars from diverse backgrounds and introduces them to the main theories and methods in longitudinal and life course research. It aims to bridge social (macro and micro) and biological perspectives. Previous schools have been held in Antwerp, Oxford, Bamberg, and Milan.


The Summer School is intended for post-doctoral fellows and postgraduate research students who are interested in exploring the potential of longitudinal and life course research or who want to further develop their existing skills.

The curriculum includes lectures and discussions led by expert researchers. Examples are drawn from a wide range of longitudinal data sets and illustrated with social and biological life course outcomes. Computer lab sessions develop practical and statistical skills for life course research. Participants will also be able to present their research ideas and obtain feedback.

The 2017 School is sponsored in part by the Jacobs Center for Productive Youth Development at the University of Zürich.


The faculty for the 2017 Summer School includes: David Blane (ICLS), Hill Kulu (Liverpool), Ross MacMillan (Bocconi), Dimitri Mortelmans (Antwerp), Karel Neels (Antwerp), Bruno Arpino (Barcelona) and Matthias Studer (Geneva). This year’s keynote address will be delivered by Aart Liefbroer of the Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI) in Amsterdam.


Theoretical perspectives on life course research, including keynote address (Monday)

Multilevel models with computer labs (Tuesday)

Recent innovations in life course methodologies (Wednesday)

Sequence analysis techniques with computer labs (Thursday)

Event history models with computer labs (Friday)