Research

I am interested in how social and economic changes influence individual political behaviour and the organisation of politics in democratic societies. My focus is on political mobilisation of individuals and the reaction of parties and labour unions to changing individual demands for political behaviour and representation.

I am further interested in political science methodology, especially the joint application of qualitative and quantitative methods in comparative research. I want to explore 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 as well as better programming opportunities. I use R extensively and support the idea of open source software for academic use.

In my PhD project (2012-2017) at the Institute for Political Science/University of Duisburg-Essen, Prof. Dr. Achim Goerres, I analysed the motives and activities of young party members in the context of societal development and organisational changes of political parties. The empirical cases of my thesis is 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.  It analysed the motivation of young people to join, their experience of the party reality and their plans for future participation.

Further past and present research projects covered the development of young people’s political organisations such as student self-government organisations and party youth organisations. Additionally, I was involved in some projects in the area of higher education research (Publication).