Consequences of the Corona Crisis for Social Inequalities in Germany

Call for Papers for a Special Issue of Soziale Welt. Deadline: June 30, 2021

Guest Editors:

Prof. Dr. Michael Gebel (University of Bamberg)

Prof. Dr. Corinna Kleinert (Leibniz Institute for Educational Trajectories, Bamberg)

The possible socio-economic consequences of the Corona crisis have received a lot of attention in public and scientific debates. On the one hand, concerns have been raised that the initial lockdown and the continued restrictions in public life had an impact on different spheres of everyday life (such as education, work and family) that is intensifying existing patterns of social inequality. On the other hand, the crisis has also been seen as an opportunity for social change and a renegotiation of social relationships.

Especially in the first months after the lockdown in March 2020 a surge of empirical studies were launched and many results published. This kind of empirical social research has only focused on the immediate, short-term impact of the crisis on social inequality so far. Research has also been limited in data availability as many empirical studies were based on small and non-representative samples and often lacked a comparison to pre-Corona times in a longitudinal perspective. This Special Issue aims at filling this research gap by inviting papers that study the consequences of the Corona crisis on social stratification and social inequalities in Germany in a longer time perspective.

Specifically, we are interested in papers that address one or more of the following overarching research questions:

  • How did the Corona crisis affect social stratification and social inequalities in Germany in the longer run?
  • How do consequences in different spheres of life and dimensions of social inequality affect and relate to each other? Is there a cumulation of negative consequences or compensation?
  • How do longer-term consequences of the crisis compare to short-term consequences?
  • How did the effects in Germany differ from other countries in strength and duration?
  • How can the effects on patterns of social inequality be best described? As burning lens, polarization, marginalization, changes of pathways, new instead of old inequalities, …?

We invite papers that analyze such changes/effects of the Corona crisis on social stratification and social inequalities, for example with regard to gender, social background and class, migration and ethnicity, age and cohort, or their intersections, in different life spheres and dimensions such as learning and education, employment chances, careers and working conditions, family life and social relations, social inclusion/exclusion, income, poverty and material deprivation, well-being and health.

Submission information and review process

We are seeking theory-guided empirical contributions, based on longitudinal quantitative or qualitative microdata that enables to assess changes/effects evoked by the Corona crisis on social stratification and social inequalities in a valid and reliable way.

Please indicate your interest by sending an extended abstract until June 30, 2021 to (subject: “Abstract Special Issue Corona”). The abstract should cover motivation and research question, theory and research hypotheses, and a detailed description of data and methods within 3-4 pages. It is not yet necessary to present results.

Editor decisions for inviting full papers will be made until July 15, 2021. The deadline for submission of full papers (in English language, 8,000 words) is January 31, 2022. All manuscripts will be thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer review process. The Special Issue (listed in the Social Sciences Citation Index) will be published in late autumn 2022.

For enquiries and information about the Special Issue, please contact the editors Michael Gebel ( or Corinna Kleinert (

Further Information (PDF)