My research covers different aspects of Empirical Democracy Research. It relates to the fields of Comparative Politics, Political Behavior and Public Opinion Research and draws on theories and approaches from Political Psychology and Political Sociology. I am particularly interested in studying how societal changes and conflicts affect political and social behavior as well as political attitudes and attitudes towards democracy. Empirically, I apply quantitative methods and adopt a comparative perspective (subnational or cross-national comparison with a focus on Western democracies). Below, you find information on my research agenda. Additional information on externally funded research projects I have been involved in, can be found here.
1. Citizens and Democracy
I am interested in the way citizens participate in politics and society and how they evaluate the political system and their very own role in this system. Thus, I study civic engagement, aspects of social cohesion, attitudes towards democracy and norms of good citizenship. I analyze how contextual factors (e.g. institutions, social structure, opinion climate) and societal changes (e.g. digitalization, demographic change, polarization) affect civic engagement and attitudes towards democracy.
- Electoral Losing and Preferences for Direct Democracy (with Hannah Werner and Anna Kern) [presented at NIG 2017, MPSA 2018, DVPW 2018]
- Institutions and Citizenship Norms [presented at MPSA 2017, AK Wahlen 2017]
- Personality and Citizenship Norms [presented at SVPW 2018]
- The Activation of Citizenship Norms
2. Rural-Urban Divides in Politics
In collaboration with Richard Traunmüller (U Mannheim/ GU Frankfurt) and Sigrid Roßteutscher (GU Frankfurt), I study rural-urban divides in German and European politics. We are particularly interested in studying political behavior and attitudes towards democracy. See projects for additional information.
- Rural-Urban Divide in Germany (with Sigrid Rossteutscher and Richard Traunmüller) [presented at AK Wahlen 2018, ECPR 2018]
- The Rural-Urban Divide in Citizen Discontent (with Richard Traunmüller) [presented at EPSA 2019]
- The Rural-Urban Divide in Political Participation Across European Societies
3. Consequences of Societal Change
In the face of far-reaching social changes, I am particularly interested in how the digital and ecological transformation affects individual action and social cohesion.
- Measuring Online Political Participation in Surveys [presented at ECPR 2017, Sektion Methoden 2018]
- Social Media Activities and Voting Behavior (with Isabelle Stadelmann-Steffen)
- Welfare State Policies and Volunteering (with Julian Erhardt und Markus Freitag)
4. Survey Research
From a methodological perspective, I am particularly interested in Survey Research. I study the validity of commonly used survey measures and I try to delevop innovative and better measures for concepts used in Empirical Democracy Research.
- Left-right scale as a common space for political parties (with Tom van der Meer and Huib Pellikaan)
- Measuring Citizenship Norms Using Experimental Approaches