About Dynamics of Inequality Across the Life-course: structures and processes

Existing and rising inequalities pose fundamental challenges to European societies and economies. The increasing gap between rich and poor, exacerbated by the recent financial and economic crises, is a key concern.

The NORFACE transnational research programme “Dynamics of Inequality Across the Life-course: structures and processes” (DIAL) focuses on the complex and highly intertwined sources of inequalities in contemporary societies, and their consequences.

The DIAL programme (2016-2021) has three major objectives:

  1. To advance globally excellent theoretical and methodological research on dynamics of inequality across the life-course which may be multi-disciplinary, inter-disciplinary and comparative, and which builds synergistically on a pan-European basis;
  2. To motivate and support excellence and capacity building for research on dynamics of inequality across the life-course on a cross-national basis throughout the NORFACE countries;
  3. To develop understanding and promote research-based knowledge and insight into dynamics of inequality across the life-course for issues of societal, practical and policy relevance, with theoretical foundations but worked on jointly with relevant users and experts.

The thirteen funded projects started their work in 2017/2018. The teams research topics ranging from inequality and its consequences in education, child development, health, populism and LBTQ citizens, to employment and working life. In these projects, researchers from a wide variety of disciplines are working together across Europe, from Portugal to Finland and the Czech Republic to Ireland, and will look beyond Europe too.


Scientific Programme Coordinator

Dr. Kilpi-Jakonen is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Turku, Finland. Her research focuses on social inequalities in education and the labour market, particularly those related to ethnicity, gender and social origin.


Funded by NORFACE

New Opportunities for Research Funding Agency Cooperation in Europe (NORFACE) is a partnership of nineteen national research funding agencies across Europe dedicated to leading and developing opportunities for scientists in the area of social and behavioural sciences. NORFACE plays an important part in responding to the grand societal challenges by promoting research of the highest quality, sharing best practices among research funders and especially by making international collaboration between social scientists in Europe possible.

NORFACE offers distinctive opportunities for researchers by developing common research funding instruments, thus opening new roads for facilitating and building high quality transnational networks of research collaboration in the area of social and behavioural science. Launched in January 2004, the NORFACE Network is the result of a successful bid for funding to the European Commission’s 6th Framework Programme within the ERA-NET scheme.

Since its launch, NORFACE has organized a Seminar Series and five joint transnational research programmes:

  • Re-emergence of Religion as a Social Force in Europe? (2006-2010)
  • Migration in Europe: Social, economic, cultural and policy dynamics (2008-2014)
  • Welfare State Futures (2013-2018)
  • Dynamics of Inequality Across the Life-course (2016-2020)
  • Transformations to Sustainability – collaboration with the Belmont Forum (2017-2021)

All five research programmes received top-up funding from the European Commission via ERA-NET Cofund grants.

More information on the research programmes, the governance structure, and the members of NORFACE can be found on the NORFACE website.