Comparative Political Science
Our Research Focus
Research in comparative politics at the Institute encompasses a broad range of topics and covers all levels of governance and a large geographical variance. In addition to the classic fields of comparison, such as elections and parties in international comparison, the main topics include political field-specific foci, for example, in environmental, infrastructure or migration policy. Furthermore, processes of democratization and autocratization or political-economic change processes are examined. A unique feature of the Institute in Erlangen is its broad regional expertise, which extends beyond Germany and the European Union to Africa (especially the sub-Saharan African region and South Africa), China, East and Southeast Asia, as well as the Middle East and North Africa.
Academic Freedom Index
Researcher: Dr. Lars Pelke
Period: 01. September 2021 – 31. August 2026
Funding: Volkswagen Foundation
171 states have ratified the UN Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, which obligates states parties to respect the freedom of scientific research. The Academic Freedom Index is a word-wide effort to assess the de facto compliance with this legally binding commitment.
The project involves close cooperation between the Institute of Political Science at FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg and the V-Dem Institute at the University of Gothenburg. It relies on a sophisticated methodology, which is informed by item response theory, and provides comprehensive expert-coded data on the realisation of academic freedom worldwide. Annual updates will open up a wide range of possible applications in science promotion, management and policy. These data also provide the basis for two postdoctoral projects on the causes as well as the consequences of declining/increasing academic freedom levels.
Global autocratic collaborations in times of Covid-19 (Volkswagen Stiftung)
Regulating the Circular Economy and Plastics in the OECD World RegCirc (GIF)
Principal Investigators: Prof. Sandra Eckert (FAU), Dr. Orr Karassin (Open University Israel), Prof. Yves Steinebach (LMU München)
Researchers at FAU: Eklavya Vasudev
Duration: 1 January 2022 31 December 2022
Funding Institution: German Israeli Foundation for Scientific Research and Development (GIF)
The German-Israeli project „Regulating the Circular Economy and Plastics in the OECD World“ (RegCirc) contributes to existing research as it for the first time investigates the regulatory and voluntary measures that have been adopted in 12 OECD countries and by the European Union in the period between 2001 and 2021 to realise the Circular Economy for plastics. Based on this stocktaking the team researches the conditions and motives that have led to the adoption of these measures, but also their effectiveness.