• population dynamics and social inequality collage
  • piggy bank and coins on white surface with rainbow drawn on it

    Zajacova and Jehn find health disparities ...

    relate to level of post-secondary credentials

  • baby's hand holding parent's finger

    58 researchers join forces

    to create more consistent and equitable family leave across Canada

  • old photo overlaid over modern family closeup with baby foot and parents holding hands

    SSHRC Insight Grant awarded

    to Andrea Willson and Kim Shuey to study social and environmental influences on health across generations

Sociology Research

Population Dynamics and Social Inequality

The Sociology Department’s overarching area of research excellence is Population Dynamics and Social Inequality. Researchers in this area use predominantly quantitative methods to examine social inequalities in society through an analysis of populations and changes within populations over time. Researchers in this field link social demography and migration, with health, aging, and the life course, and the study of inequalities within health, education, families, and the labour market.

Our department’s commitment is to be national, as well as international, research leaders in this field.

Main Research Areas of Expertise

Aging and the Life Course

adult and baby join hands

We study aging over the life course as a social process with attention to the intersections of individual lives, social structures, and social change. This research examines family ties and aging; work, family and policy; socioeconomic status and health from early life through old age; and identity formation across the life course.

Health and Health Inequality

elderly hospital patient

We use sociological approaches to understand health as a manifestation of broader structures of social inequality. Research includes examining cumulative advantage processes, social mobility, health behaviours, health professions, work and health, intimate partner violence, and Aboriginal well-being.

Social Demography and Migration

crowded street

We study various aspects of population dynamics, including family demography, population health, and patterns of crime and violence. Our research examines international migration, policy, and the economic and social integration of children of immigrants.

Inequality, Power, and Social Regulation

surveillance cameras

We explore social inequality along multiple dimensions including class, race, ethnicity and immigration status, sexuality, and gender, and research the ways in which social institutions, social processes and social practices are infused with, and shaped by power.

Work, Occupations, and Professions

window cleaning worker hanging by ropes as he works on the side of a high-rise building

We study inequality in work, in the context of the changing nature of work and the economy. This includes processes of professionalization and regulation, gender and work, school-work transitions, job stress, disability accommodation, precarious employment, work and aging, and retirement and pensions.