My main interest is the study of population, family and the life course. More specifically, I have worked on fertility and family change, the transition to adulthood, life course analysis, population forecasting, agent-based modelling and I have collaborated in designing comparative surveys.

I am affiliated to the Department of Sociology and Nuffield College at the University of Oxford since 2012. Previously, I worked at Bocconi University (2002-2012) and at the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (1999-2002). I hold a Ph.D. in Demography from the University of Padua (1998), and a “Laurea” in Economics (specialisation in Statistics) from Bocconi (1994).


Since 2003, I am working on methodological issues that are relevant to social demographers (too), mainly on topics that are related to representing and  finding patterns in longitudinal data. I have a dual background in psychology and mathematics  and I affiliated to the Department of Sociology of the Faculty of Social Sciences of VU University in Amsterdam. I am especially interested in historical and contemporary family formation trajectories and labor market careers and the mathematical and statistical modeling thereof in terms of inequality-related variables. Despite my substantive interests, I tend to focus on formal and mathematical aspects and hence I also work with computer scientists on problems that have a wider relevance. To me, CONOPP is a multidisciplinary environment that puts up problems that are challenging, substantively and methodologically.   



Collaboration partners CONOPP

T: +31 20 59 88403


Harry Ganzeboom is a Professor of Sociology and Social Research Methodology at the Faculty of Social Sciences of VU University in Amsterdam. Previously, he worked at University of Utrecht (1993-2002) and Radboud University Nijmegen (1991-1993). He holds a PhD in Sociology from the University of Utrecht (1984).

His main interest is in the field of social stratification and comparative survey research.



T: +31 20 59 88634


Anne H. Gauthier is senior researcher at the Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI). She obtained her doctorate from the University of Oxford in 1992 and has since held teaching and research positions in Britain, Canada, the United States, and the Netherlands. She was the Canada Research Chair in Comparative Family Policy at the University of Calgary from 1999 to 2010. During her career, she has published widely in the field of comparative family policy and fertility, family sociology and parenting. She is currently working on projects examining the determinants and consequences of parental investment into children. Since May 2013, she is the International Coordinator of the Generations and Gender Programme (GGP) which is a multi-country research project on family dynamics and intergenerational relationships.


T: +31 (0)70 3565200


Cees Elzinga

Francesco Billari

Harry Ganzeboom

Anne Gauthier

Nicole Hiekel

Nicole Hiekel is a researcher at the University of Cologne at the Institute of Sociology and Social Psychology (ISS) and affiliated to the Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI). In 2014, she received her Ph.D. from the VU University Amsterdam for her dissertation: "The different meanings of cohabitation across Europe. How cohabiters view their unions and differ in their plans and behaviors". Within the CONOPP project she is interested in studying the interplay between different domains of the life course in which social disadvantage experienced in childhood are reproduced. Using structural equation modelling and sequence analysis techniques she studies the antecedents and consequences of socially stratified pathways into young adulthood and their association with later life outcomes from a comparative perspective.