A main mechanism behind the change in European and North American societies in the second half of the 20th century is the educational expansion, i.e. the increase in educational opportunities and the higher demand for education. Whereas other abstract social processes like modernization have been widely theorized in social science literature, the educational expansion and its consequences in particular have not been well studied. Therefore the main aim of this compilation is to deal with the question of whether the demands of the educational reforms have been fulfilled and which other consequences the educational expansion has had. This book will focus on consequences of the educational expansion for individuals and their life courses as well as for the social structure and other societal areas such as culture and politics. Aspects that will be analysed in the light of educational expansion include participation in education, educational inequalities, labour market outcomes, educational returns, and gender differences as well as crime, life expectancy, and lifestyles. Countries analysed in the book include West European countries like Germany, France, Italy and Spain, East European countries (Hungary, Poland, and the Czech Republic) as well as the US.
One of the attractions of Sofia, capital of Bulgaria, is the monument to its liberator, Russian Tsar Alexander II. The article contrasts the treatment of the monument during socialist time with the period before and after this interlude.
As the microblogging service Twitter becomes an increasingly popular tool for politicians and general users to comment on and discuss politics, researchers increasingly turn to the relationship between tweets mentioning parties or candidates and their respective electoral fortunes. This paper offers a detailed analysis of Twitter messages posted during the run-up to the 2009 federal election in Germany and their relationship to the electoral fortunes of Germany’s parties and candidates. This analysis will focus on four metrics for measuring the attention on parties and candidates on Twitter and the relationship to their respective vote share. The metrics discussed here are: the total number of hashtags mentioning a given political party; the dynamics between explicitly positive or explicitly negative mentions of a given political party; the total number of hashtags mentioning one of the leading candidates, Angela Merkel (CDU) or Frank-Walter Steinmeier (SPD); and the total number of users who used hashtags mentioning a given party or candidate. The results will show that during the campaign of 2009 Twitter messages commenting on parties and candidates showed little, if any, systematic relationship with subsequent votes on election day. In the discussion of the results, I will raise a number of issues that researchers interested in predicting elections with Twitter will have to address to advance the state of the literature.