The European Research Council (ERC) has awarded one of its prestigious Advanced Investigator Grant to Marco van Leeuwen, who is a research fellow at the IISH. The research project is called "Towards open societies? Trends, variations and driving forces of intergenerational social mobility in Europe over the past three centuries".
Marco van Leeuwen will investigate the degree to which children can advance from the social class of their parents through the choice of their occupation. Which institutions and other factors stimulate or hamper social mobility? Is education important, or industrialization and similar changes in the structure of employment? Are legislation and government policies decisive, or changing social norms for instance about the employment of women? Are mayor wars watersheds? The project will make use of a unique database of about 4 million marriage acts from the period 1680-1970 and will link these to social surveys covering the period since 1950, data from personnel ads and other sources. It will also use the international historical classification of occupations HISCO, which was developed by Marco van Leeuwen and others.
The project will be executed at Utrecht University, where Van Leeuwen already held a professorship. Van Leeuwen will remain at the IISH as a honorary fellow, and involved with the History of Work web site and the research project Giving In the Golden Age.