Il sito del Laboratorio di Politiche Sociali

We would like to report the publication of the call for papers for the thematic issue of Italian Journal of Sociology of Education on

Mastering youth transitions: Italy as a case for the contemporary complexities


The special issue is edited by Martina Visentin, Alan France, Orazio Giancola and Lara Maestripieri.

Below is the complete text of the call:


Empirical and theoretical studies show that youth transitions have tended to occur later than the previous generation and to be more multifaceted. More individualized analyses point to individualization, destandardization, and second demographic transitions as suitable processes for interpreting today’s youth transitions. The emphasis has been placed on the existence of a common pattern in the demographic and social events defining these transitions, which researchers describe as complex, delayed, and prolonged. Some transitions theories are more critical in their interpretations of youth transitions, calling for a renovated focus on the importance of structural factors that shape youths’ conditions and identities. Recent data shows how traditional axes of inequalities, such as class, gender or ethnic origin, influence youth transitions, and how their intersections might shape this influence.

In this sense, Italy is a particularly relevant case as it shows the multifaceted and complex reality with which young people have to cope nowadays when imagining and planning their future. Stemming from this consideration, this special issue of IJSE aims at investigating the multifaced nature of youth transitions, using the Italian setting as fertile ground. Its main goal is to bring together research and analyses on educations policies, experiences and interventions dealing with life transitions and adulthood by collecting contributions that examine the situation in Italy, comparing it with other similar or contrasting settings to delineate the state of the art and research gaps on youth transition studies in a controversial high-speed society. The comparative perspective must be intended in a broad sense: either by comparing Italy with other countries in Europe (e.g. other countries belonging to the Southern European model) or showing differences within territories in Italy, and how the territorial fragility of certain areas, e.g. in the south, in the periphery or rural context, might play a role in delaying and making complex the youth transition to adulthood. We welcome all approaches – theoretical and empirical, micro and macro, qualitative and quantitative, as well as geographically specific research. We are also interested in manuscripts that discuss and propose new metaphors in order to interpret these new forms of youth transitions.

The focus will be specifically on: i. intergenerational relationships. What parents do or not do for their young sons? Are there patterns of exchange of resources between parents and sons? These patterns are crucial for the well-being of individuals and families and the broader issues of social policy and social inequality; ii. education and work paradoxes. Young people continue to have a strong commitment to education, believing it will still help them in their career path to successful employment. Does it? iii. Do structural factors (and their intersections) have a role in determining different trajectories of youth transitions? We use the term‘intersection’ purposively: we specifically invite research that adopts an intersectional analytical frame the multiple dimensions of disadvantage to which young are subjected (e.g. gender, social class, ethnicity, living in fragile territories, etc.).

We eventually welcome papers interrogate young people changing experiences and opportunity ‘in the middle’ of COVID-19 pandemic, explicitly focusing on direct and indirect effects of this call key points.


Key dates and deadlines

October 30, 2020: Abstract submission deadline
November 15, 2020: Communication of accepted abstracts
January 30, 2021: Paper submission deadline
April 10, 2021: Reviewers’ feedback sent to authors (accepted/revise and resubmit/rejected) May 20, 2021: Submission of the revised paper (if needed)
June, 2021: Online publication


For more information, please, consult the linked page.