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I am a political scientist with a strong background in International Relations, European Integration and Comparative Politics and a keen interest in applied qualitative and quantitative methodology of social science inquiry. I am Adjunct Professor at the Department of Politics and Public Administration, University of Konstanz (D). In winter term 2020/21, I worked as Replacement Professor at the Department of Political Science at the University of Mannheim, and in summer term 2020, as Replacement Professor at the Institute of Political Science and Sociology, University of Würzburg (D). Priorly, I have been Senior Lecturer at the University of Konstanz (D) and I have served as Replacement Professor at the Universities of Basel (CH), Göttingen (D) and Konstanz (D). I earned my PhD from Humboldt University Berlin (D) while being a researcher at the Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
In my research, I specialize in the field of international crisis mananagement, democratization and state-building in developing, transitioning, fragile and post-conflict contexts. My research focuses on causes and consequences of violent conflict, on state fragility, and on the politics of international state-building and externally overseen transition to democracy. This includes my PhD thesis on political reorganization after military intervention under external oversight and my habilitation thesis on studies of international democracy promotion through EU and UN actors in post-conflict societies and fragile states.
In my habilitation thesis, completed in 2018 at the University of Konstanz, I investigate strategies and instruments of EU and UN democracy promotion, study their effects, and offer innovative explanations as of why international democracy promotion is often less effective than assumed. The habilitation thesis is based on two original datasets, expert interviews and several in-depth case studies.
Currently, I coordinate a collaborative research consortium investigating the European Union's democracy promotion policy in the European Neighbourhood. Additionally, I plan a research project on the interaction of external actors (e.g. international organizations, aid agencies and private foundations) with pro-democracy movements and their fight for democracy in hybrid regimes. This project will innovatively include theories and methods of political science (International Relations, transition and comparative autocracy research, social movement studies), political sociology and political psychology.
I am founder and member of the Research Network External Democracy Promotion (EDP) that has been funded by the DFG and the Leibniz Gemeinschaft.