Research Area:

#Research Project

Young Adults in the COVID-19 Pandemic  (COV-identities)

Funded by: own funds (University of Innsbruck)
Principal Investigators: Tabea Bork-Hüffer, Katja Kaufmann
Research Associates: Christoph Straganz

Project Period: 2020 – ongoing

This project takes the unprecedented chance to accompany young adults throughout the period of uncertainty that is caused by the COVID-19-pandemic with the objective to better understand young adults’ active, flexible and innovative strategies of responding to the pandemic. The leading research question is: How are young adults making their everyday spaces, identities and futures during the COVID-19-pandemic? The project’s main objectives are to analyse how young adults are actively responding to and making their lives during the global COVID-19 pandemic and the concomitant governmental measures on a very personal level. The project team is currently collecting data comparatively on three groups of young adults: (1) pupils in their final school year (Maturant*innen) at Tyrolean schools, (2) students of vocational schools (Berufsschüler*innen) in Tyrol, and (3) University students enrolled at Universities in Tyrol. For all above-named three themes, we seek to analyse the change over the course of the measures against the pandemic through a swiftly started, longitudinal research design, stretching from the beginning of the COVID-19 measures throughout the year 2020. In doing so, we seek to contribute to knowledge on the micro-level which we perceive as essential for authorities, educators and researchers to be able to assess the actual effects the measures will have had on young people.


  • Kaufmann, K., Straganz, C. & T. Bork-Hüffer (in print): City-life No More? Young Adults’ Disrupted Urban Experiences and their Digital Mediation under Covid-19. In: Urban Planning 5 (4), DOI: 10.17645/up.v5i4.3479
  • Straganz, C. Kreh, A., Juen, B., Bork-Hüffer, T. (2020): Compliance with measures to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. Results from two studies with young adults in Tyrol, Austria. In: DCNA Disaster Research Days report, 2020
  • Bork-Hüffer, T., Mahlknecht, B. & A. Markl (accepted for publication): Kollektivität in und durch cON/FFlating spaces: 8 Thesen zur Emergenz, Historizität und Interaktionen in sozio-materiell-technologischen (Alltags-)Räumen [Collectivity in and through cON/FFlating spaces: 8 theses on the emergence, historicity and interactions in mundane socio-material-technological spaces]. In: Zeitschrift für Kultur- und Kollektivwissenschaften.
  • Bork-Hüffer, T., Straganz, C. & K. Kaufmann (accepted for publication): Spatial (Im-)Mobilities of Young Adults During the COVID-19 Pandemic (COV-IDENTITIES project). Extended abstract of the paper presented at the Online Symposium on “Disrupted Geographies or the Disruption of Geography during COVID-19”, on 7 July 2020.

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Events and Talks

  • Online Symposium: “Disrupted Geographies or the Disruption of Geography during COVID-19”, 7-9 July 2020 (organisers: Carsten Butsch, Tabea Bork-Hüffer, Markus Nüsser, Nicole Aeschbach and Simon Peth)
  • Talk: Bork-Hüffer, T., Straganz, C. & K. Kaufmann (2020): Spatial (Im-)Mobilities of Young Adults During the COVID-19 Pandemic (COV-IDENTITIES project). Online Symposium on “Disrupted Geographies or the Disruption of Geography during COVID-19”, 7 July 2020.
  • Talk: Kaufmann, K., Straganz, C., Mahlknecht, B. & T. Bork-Hüffer (2020): Reaching Young People During a Pandemic with Mobile Instant Messaging Interviews: Methodological Potentials for the Analysis of Socio-Material-Technological Spatialities. Virtual Symposium of the RGS Research Group Digital Geography, 1 July, 2020.
  • Talk: Straganz, C. & T. Bork-Hüffer (announced): Young Adults‘ Positionality during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Annual Meeting of the Research Group Medical Geographies and the Geographies of Health, Remagen, 24 September 2020.

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© 2021
Research Group Transient Spaces & Societies

Geographisches Institut Innsbruck
Innrain 52, 6020 Innsbruck



Transient Spaces and Societies
Transient Spaces and Societies