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Research Urban and Regional Studies Institute PRC


Population and Wellbeing in Context

Population Studies is about you, me, about us. It is about our lives, and about how we make sense of our lives. We are born, grow up, develop relationships and sometimes split up again, have children or do not have them, we move between places, sometimes between continents, we age, healthily or not, and then we die. The life course approach is central to the research of the Population Research Centre and also to our teaching. We study the events that take place during our lives against the background of the socio-cultural and spatial context, and are interested in their consequences for well-being.

Two broad strands of research characterise our research, relating to all phases of the life course: Health and mortality (including maternal and child health, and healthy ageing), and Migration, families and households. In our research we use register data, survey data, or qualitative data, and apply methods from analytical demography, advanced statistical analysis, qualitative analytical methods, and participatory approaches. This combination of research data and methods generates rich findings that inform scientists and policy makers, and helps to develop interventions that are embedded into people's lives and address issues of inequality and inequity.

Ultimately, we aim to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals No Poverty, Zero Hunger, Good Health and Well-being, Gender equality, and Reduced Inequality. Within the Faculty’s research programme ‘towards Wellbeing, Innovation and Spatial Transformation (tWIST)’, our research is first and foremost related to the wellbeing element. In all our research projects the consequences for well-being of the phenomena we study form an important motivation for the research. In many projects we explicitly study wellbeing or health outcomes; in others we study wellbeing as a plural space using Sen's Capability Approach. The spatial transformation element of tWIST is apparent in our research on migration; place making in healthy ageing and community involvement; and population issues at the macro level of regions and countries (e.g. health and mortality patterns). Our research is also concerned with social innovation, e.g. in work on the empowerment of older people. We aim at sharing our results with the general public to inform and participate in the public debate on population issues.

Thus, Population Studies is about our lives in all its phases and places, contributing to a sustainable future for all people.


Last modified:10 March 2020 08.48 a.m.