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Heinz Sünker, emeritus professor, Universität zu Wuppertal

Honorary professor at DPU, Aarhus University from 1 September 2020.

Professor Heinz Sünker joined the University of Wuppertal in 1991 as Professor of Social Pedagogy and Social Policy, and in 2016 was awarded the title of Rudolf-Carnap-Senior-Professor. He studied at the University of Münster and later at the University of Heidelberg, followed by his PhD and Habilitation (Bildung, Alltag und Subjektivität. Elemente einer Theorie der Sozialpädagogik. Weinheim 1989) at Bielefeld University. Prior to this he worked in political youth education and at Gymnasiums in Heidelberg and Mannheim.

Professor Sünker has always played an active role within and beyond the University. He served as Dean of the Department of Social Sciences at Wuppertal (second half of the 90ies) and, as a ‘Vertrauensdozent’ of the Hans-Böckler-Foundation (Düsseldorf) for over 20 years, he has been a leading activist promoting university access for politically active young people from family backgrounds and heritages typically under-represented in university student cohorts. In his own field of scholarship, Professor Sünker was President of ISA Research Committee 10 ‘Organisational democracy, participation, self-management’, and vice-chair of the IPSA Research Committee ‘Political Socialisation and political education. In addition, he has been a member of a core team organising courses at the IUC Dubrovnik since the 1980s attended by many Scandinavian colleagues. He has also supervised over 40 PhDs to completion, and undertaken international PhD examining.

Professor Sünker’s main research interests and empirical projects, along with the many conferences he has organised, reflect his work on Western Marxism/Critical Theory, Theory and History of Social Work and Societal Policy, Bildungstheorie/Sociology of Education, Childhood Studies and Politics of Childhood, Fascism and Resistance/Labour Movement. He has two new books currently in press - Th. W. Adorno. Aktualität und Perspektiven seiner Kritischen Theorie. Münster 2020 and Handbuch Kinder und Technik, ed. with R. Braches-Chyrek, J. Moran-Ellis, Ch. Röhner. Opladen/Toronto 2020, and is now re-developing work on Henri Lefebvre and a further book on critical theory. He is also an editorial board member for a number of international journals, and chief editor of Sozialwissenschaftliche Literatur Rundschau (SLR) published by neue praxis Verlag.