Sociology at the University of Geneva

The Department of Sociology at the University of Geneva has a long tradition. Founded in the 19th century (in 1886) it’s one of the oldest departments of this discipline in the world. Many famous scholars taught sociology in Geneva, such as de Sismondi, Louis Warin, Jean Piaget or Roger Girod.

Today, the Department and the Institute of sociological research (ISR) count about 80 researchers and teachers and is the most important sociology school in Switzerland. The profile is more methodological than thematic orientated and has its strengths in the multiplicity of approaches and schools represented.

The teaching is organised on three levels :

  • The Bachelor with a common first year of the Faculty guaranteeing a broad knowledge of social sciences and a second part in which the basic topics and methods of contemporary sociology are discussed.
  • The Master programme in sociology which is skill-oriented and combines profound learning modules in different methods (audiovisual, discourse analysis and network analysis, statistics, intervention techniques, observation) and a one-year research project carried out in a small group setting.
  • The doctoral school, which is organised on 10 to 12 thematic days at year.

Research is another strength of the Department which has its own Institute (Institute of Sociological Research - ISR) and many grants and mandates at the international, national and local levels.