How can children, adolescents and young adults improve their skills in self-evaluation and self-regulation? How can they augment their problem-solving skills? How do self-regulated leisure activities affect individual beliefs, especially control beliefs and self-efficacy beliefs? And how can our knowledge on such effects of self-regulated behavior on individual self-efficacy inspire field interventions with the aim of empowerment? These questions are at the heart of several third-party funded research projects on (a) empowerment and cultural participation (b) empowerment, action-regulation and problem solving:
Empowerment and Cultural Participation
Several of our projects with a focus on empowerment study a broad range of cultural leisure activities that are often neglected by educational large-scale studies. These activities include musicking (in elementary and secondary students) painting, writing and sports.
Empowerment, Action Regulation and Problem Solving
The projects of this research point focus on cross-curricular effects at the interface of intelligence, personality and action-regulation. We study the interplay of cognitive abilities including working memory, the intelligence, and problem-solving strategies, personality traits including the big five and dispositional aspects of self-regulation. Regarding the targeted populations, our projects cover a wide age range from primary school age to emerging adulthood.
Recent developments in digitization may be seen as threats, however, they also provide the opportunity to foster a positive relationship of people with their communities (place attachment) via participatory regional development. This may be particularly positive for sustainable development of rural areas at risk of demographic decline. The project’s aim is to synthesize, systematize and analyse Europe-wide examples of ‘good practice’ related to digital strategies and instruments on this issue. These examples will be compiled, resulting in an orientation framework that is being made available in the form of a digital toolbox for further use in regional development.
The research questions are: how can digitization contribute to a positive interpretation of rural areas or rural identification? How can the potential of digitization be used for participatory regional development? In particular, how can place attachment be strengthened? And how may contributors only digitally present be involved? How can place attachment counter depopulation and migration? And how can digital tools be used to successfully address pivotal challenges of rural regions such as brain drain and youth drain? Which strategies have already been successfully pursued based on such questions? What criteria of good practice for participatory digital regional development result from examples available in Europe?
By addressing these questions, the project will provide a deeper insight into patterns and processes of place attachment in times of digitization and demographic change. At the same time, it provides a toolbox for the target-oriented design of programs for rural regions. Given the lower carbon footprint of rural populations, this also contributes to sustainable development.
Condensed Joy? Multi-day Music-Educational Interventions: Determinants of Participation, Effective Design Features and Effects on Competences and Personal Development [MEMU-IN]
Reading, Creative Writing and Painting as Leisure Activity of Primary School Children with and without a Migratory Background – an Interdisciplinary Project for the Interaction of Curricular and Extracurricular Surroundings