Research

I research how socio-economic change influences individual political behaviour and the organisation of politics in democratic societies. My focus is the mobilisation of individuals and the reaction of political organisations, mainly parties and labour unions, to individual demands for political behaviour and representation.

I am further interested in political science methodology, especially qualitative and quantitative methods in comparative research. I seek the benefits of different research strategies to analyse societies that are becoming more complex and more unified at the same time. I like the increased availability of data and programming opportunities. I use R extensively and support the idea of open source software for academic use.

My PhD project (2012-2017) at the Institute for Political Science/University of Duisburg-Essen, Prof. Dr. Achim Goerres focused the motives and activities of young party members in the context of greater societal trends and organisational changes within political parties. The empirical case of my thesis was the social democratic party (SPD) in Germany. The study used a mixed method design with semi-structures interviews and a total population survey among the young members in this party.  I analysed the motivation of young people to join, their experience of the party reality and their plans for future participation.

Other previous research covered the development of young people’s political organisations such as student self-government organisations and party youth organisations. Additionally, I was involved in several projects in the area of higher education research, student orientation and individual career development of students, predominantly from marginalised groups (see Publication).