I am currently developing a research program centered on theoretical and empirical approaches to luck. The theoretical framework establishes a working definition of luck as a real social phenomenon and makes the case for why it is valuable to include luck in sociology’s conceptual repertoire. Using this framework as a springboard, I outline a host of research questions and hypotheses pertaining to the social construction of luck, the real effects of luck, and theoretical interventions related to luck. I am currently gathering interview and archival data that will serve as the basis for empirical studies that investigate, for instance, how people view the role of luck in their lives, to which aspects of their lives (e.g., economic, relationships, health, athletics) they apply ideas about luck, and under what conditions it is legitimate to attribute outcomes to luck.
Max-Weber-Kolleg für kultur- und sozialwissenschaftliche Studien Universität Erfurt Postfach 90 02 21 99105 Erfurt