Ph.D. Defence Andreas Martin

A new candidate for a Ph.D. in sociology with strong foothold in education science will be defended in Room 48 in  Research IV 15.30-17.00 hours on  05.April. Andreas Martin presents his thesis on governance potentials in further education and training. “Bildungspolitische Steuerungspotentiale im Feld der Weiterbildung” is presented in German, questions may be posed also in English. The session is open to the public. 

Multi-level analyses with European Labour Force Survey Data, as well as Germany specific samples on participation in lifelong learning will be the empirical core of the thesis.

Cooperation among further training organizations is a second topic. Socio-economic approaches to evaluate the welfare state provisions from a governance perspective will be discussed as well.

The thesis covers a lot of topics that were close to the heart of
Klaus J. Jacobs the founder of the Jacobs Center on lifelong learning and institutional development originally at International University Bremen, which then became Jacobs University Bremen as we know it today.

Digital technology and social movements

As outcome of my teaching on Society and Technology at Jacobs University Bremen jointly with Prof. Thomas Heine and through links to the European Trade Union Research Institute in Brussels the paper on “digital technologies and democratic processes” was realized. The attention within 1 month of publication is not bad for a scientific paper. Positive use of technology to enhance democratic processes in large entities (firms, associations, organizations, institutions, societies) should receive more academic attention. New course on this already in the making … FREE Paper Download here.


As social scientists we need to tackle the question of mobility from a variety of angles. Metropolitan areas face huge challenges to get people to work and back to their homes, rarely in the same part of the city.  New technology of e-cars and e-moblity in general will have huge consequences on the labour force as well. Some components will no longer be needed, others will be added to enhance safety of passengers in and around the mobile vehicle.  Comfort in self-driving cars is largely a question of consumer needs, ability and willingness to pay for comfort. Soon individual choice is confronted with societies’ legal and ethical frameworks to provide for mobility for some versus all. Congestion and pollution management in cities needs a new legal framing as well.
Inclusive societies have not been an issue at most of the mobility faires I have participated in in the last few years. Yet, we know, aging societies face multiple challenges and inclusive mobility is hardly even on the agenda on such mobility faires. Mainstreaming of social inclusion is surely a continued challenge for industrial societies.

Health, demographic change and well-being

The EU workprogramme 2018-2020 is out and the participation in the open day in Brussels allowed to make many useful new contacts to participate or develop an own research project. Personalised medicine is an area we social science insights seem particularly instructive. The EU Commission presentation highlighted the importance to complement the project proposals with social science expertise.

A mainstreaming of social science awareness in scientific projects of all disciplines is not just a “nice-to-have” component of a project proposal. At Jacobs University there is a tradition of cross-discipline fertilization. Do not hesitate to get in touch for more precise information of cooperation potentials or past examples of cooperation.


The Frankfurt book fair 2017 is an exciting place on publishing where content meets markets or authors meet publishers. The most recent trend added is the growing self-publishing market. In addition to the flagship publishers and media companies bloggers are lightening up the sphere. In  one session authors met their blogging critics. Relationship building is key in the scene.

The EU prize for literature was also awarded. It is not going to just one person but to 12 authors simultaneously. A nice gesture to celebrate multilingualism in Europe. A very important message at times of English language dominance in scientific publishing and the USA leaving UNESCO again.

The self-publishing trends and bloggers as unpaid journalists should receive more attention in research as they are becoming a vital part of modern democratic structures. Some first results of a study can be found here. Even the production and distribution of humor has changed. We need funding to study such trends of rising and declining authors, publishers and the publishing sector as a whole. Foundations are great to raise attention to topics and authors, but we know little about the what has happened several years later.