I am a Professor of Political Science and International & Transnational Relations at the University of Lucerne.

Before joining the University of Lucerne, I was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Konstanz (2014-2016) and in the “International Political Economy” group at the Center for Comparative and International Studies (CIS) and the Institute for Environmental Decisions (IED) at ETH Zürich (2011-2014). My postdoctoral research projects focused on the spatial and temporal dynamics in climate change policy-making, the link between climate change and migration as well as on individual trade preferences. From 2006-2011, I completed my dissertation on the interdependencies in decision-making between local governments within the United States with a special focus on voluntary climate change policy at ETH Zürich.

Research Interests

In my research activities, I am interested in how global problems (climate change) and enhanced interdependence (globalization) that transcend the traditional sphere of the nation state impact on politics and governance aspects within and between nations. In both of the overarching research domains of globalization and climate change, I combine insights from international political economy, comparative politics and theories of regulation.

Comparative Climate Change Politics

(1) My research adds to the emerging field of systematic comparative political economy research explaining variation in national climate change policymaking by domestic factors. For the past years, there has been a clear need to consider domestic processes and actors more carefully. Domestic factors such as general public demand or interest group preferences, domestic political institutions as well as political parties can add to our understanding of the empirical variation of climate change policymaking to attain the goals of the Paris Agreement.

My current research agenda hence deals with the comparative societal and political implications of climate change and energy policy.  Within the multi-annual Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF) project „Beyond Policy Adoption: Implications of Energy Policy on Parties, Publics and Individuals“, we seek to understand how energy-related climate change policies affect actors’ incentives and preferences and what these effects mean for the political sustainability of large societal transformations and -eventually- for the global governance of climate change (see under Project).

Individual Preferences for Globalization

(2) From a birds-eye view, I am interested in the impact of Globalization for individuals and their preferences. 

My current research agenda within this area has to do with individual migration preferences. Immigration in general and the free movement of persons in particular have been prominent and at times even dominating issue within newsmedia and academic discourses for the past years. Extant literature has sought to explain variation in individuals’ opposition to immigration and has mostly focused on two main forms of natives’ threats when evaluating immigration: economic and cultural sources. We have conducted survey experiments within Switzerland in order to disentangle these two threats (see page on publications).