Who’s Who

Please find below details about current members. This list is mainly designed to enable you to find members of the association with whom you could collaborate on projects. It therefore highlights our reasons for engaging in DemocracyNet.eu.
For more general information about the members, see here.

Former members are also listed in the bottom of this list. Their names are preceded by a *.

All persons are listed in alphabetical order.

Current members
Odile Ammann

odile.ammann@rwi.uzh.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: I am very interested in interdisciplinary exchanges and collaborations in connection with democracy studies. I am a postdoctoral researcherin law, and my habilitation thesis deals with the concept of NGOs from a constitutional and administrative law perspective, as well as from a legal theory perspective. This requires delving into the philosophical and political science issues that are connected to this topic. DemocracyNet.eu seems to be an ideal forum for this purpose.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: When studying NGOs from a public law perspective, a good understanding of democratic theory seems essential. Hence, I believe that my research would overlap with a range of topics that interest the members of your network. I am also very keen to work on knowledge transfer to the wider public, a goal that tends to be neglected in academic research.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  Participating in workshops and conferences, organizing interdisciplinary academic events, organizing events for the broader public (e.g. roundtables or podium discussions), publishing blog posts and newspaper articles with other members of the networks, engaging with local civil society actors. I would especially love to co-organize an interdisciplinary lecture series or workshop on democracy and nongovernmental actors.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I would highly benefit from the interdisciplinary input provided by the network and from the structure, which allows both taking part in existing events and bringing in new ideas. An exchange with people outside my own discipline is something I actively seek and value.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: Collaboration with others; good balance between administrative (organizational) tasks and substantive input; common interests and synergies in terms of topics.
Hans Asenbaum

H.Asenbaum@westminster.ac.uk

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: As a PhD student who is aspiring an academic career, I am keen on finding people with similar research interests to build a network for future collaborations and to deepen the understanding on various forms of participatory democracy.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: My research interests are deliberative, participatory, and radical democratic theory and practice. I am interested in new forms of participation generated by social movements contesting hegemonic discourses. I am exploring new theoretical contributions to democratic theory from the perspective of constructivist and particularly gender and queer theory re-conceptualizing the democratic subject and the role of social identity in democracy. Moreover, in my PhD I explore digital communication and new participatory modes on the internet. (Sorry, I don’t know what “described aims” refers to.) All of the above themes relate to in-/equality and power in participatory democracy.
Q3: In what way could you benefit from being part of DemocracyNet.eu?
A3: I feel like I’m on the quest of finding like-minded people out there. I hope to find some scholars who, like me, would like to explore new radical and alternative democratic meanings and practices.
Q4: What kind of activities do you consider to be important to organize in order to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A4: I think conferences and workshops are a good way to get to know each other and build a community of a new generation of democratic researchers.
Q5: What activities would you have interest in co-organizing (be as specific as possible; you can include topics or locations)?
A5: Conferences, workshops or even summer schools that could take place either in Switzerland (although quite expensive!) or London. Topics could be: Radical democracy, social movements and democracy, gender relations and identities in participatory democracy, power and inequality in participatory democracy, digital communication and radical democratic politics.
Q6: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A6: I’d be happy to co-organize any events that are close to my research topic. For me the topic is the most important criterion (see research interests above).
Johannes Malte Besch

j.besch@freenet.de

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: The idea of connecting science and the public.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: In my research on party factionalism, the need for parties to aggregate heterogeneity through processes and institutions that involve bargaining and deliberation is an important theme. Parties are an important link between the state and the society. Being involved in the organization of the Abstimmbar of DemocracyNet, which is an institution connecting citizens, scientists and politicians, I believe that my research is connected towards the activities and aims of DemocracyNet.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  Online and offline discussion forums, workshops etc.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Being involved in activities of DemocracyNet brings many potential benefits.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: Team-work so that one is involved in a group of organizers; otherwise it would depend a lot on the specific activity.
Dimitri Courant

Dimitri.Courant@unil.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: My main field of research is studies on democracy and I share the vision and goals of DemocracyNet.eu that is to say teamwork and taking sciences in the city. I also had good relationship with several members and I am looking forward meeting new researchers working on Democracy.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: Idem.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:Internal workshops to present work in progress, raise question and get feedback and council from the peers; public events to invite important specialists in the field and get the opportunity to present our own research.
Internal workshop and public events either conference or seminar on the topics of sortition, minipublics, citizen conference, deliberation, representation and participation.
Also, on broader topics such as international comparison, epistemological position and empirical qualitative methodology.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Discussing with colleagues to exchange knowledge and advices. Take part in activities. Collaborating with other researcher in a positive framework. Presenting social sciences on democracy to a wider audience. Discovering new researchers and topics.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: If the mood and relationships are good, respectful, efficient and productive. If it is worth it, maximum results with a minimum of time.
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Alix D’Agostino

alix.dagostino@uzh.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: I am very interested in democracy studies. As my PhD is oriented at policy design, I would love to be able to widen my knowledge on democracy research as a whole and not only the policy aspect. Additionally, a member told me about the debates/presentations organized around each federal vote. This is a topic that interests me greatly, and I believe could help individuals think about voting topics on a deeper level (rather than seeing which party suggests yes/no and follow that). It is also a nice way to “fight” abstention.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I believe I could bring my policy knowledge to the group. My research focuses on Swiss park policies, and its analysis with the ACF, which is an up and coming policy analysis framework with much to discuss. Additionally, I worked as a research assistant at the methodology chair during my MA and can (try to) help with R or quant. method problems.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  I believe that effective knowledge transfer will come from a well-rounded event (good speakers, venue, organization, etc.) From the little I have seen about DemocracyNet, a wide range of interesting events are already present. I don’t think much more is necessary, as generally fewer effective events will be more powerful than many rushed events that try to cover too much ground.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: improving event organization & public speaking/moderator skills; collaboration with researchers from other institutes and networking; widened knowledge in the democracy field.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I would happily help on different instances. The most important in my opinion is to clearly define “who does what”. This does not have to be specific with precise task lists, but rather that every individual knows what they are responsible for and makes sure it is done. It is always nice to avoid a “I didn’t know I had to do that”, “I thought person X did it”, etc.
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Alice el-Wakil

alice.el-wakil@zda.uzh.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: I am very interested in both the interdisciplinary character of this group and its objective to communicate research to the wider public.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: In general terms, the groups’ project of studying current democracies in a way that is relevant for social sciences and for the broader society is very similar to mine.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  Organize conferences such as the ones you organized in the past; collaborate with students’ associations.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I am certain I will benefit from the discussions with scholars researching in a similar field as well as from their feedbacks on my project. Such a network could also help me developing my practical knowledge needed to organize workshops, small-scale conferences or panels.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: DemocracyNet seems to me to be a serious project pursuing a purpose worth spending time for.
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Dannica Fleuss

fleussd@hsu-hh.de

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: Personal interactions with members of the group, social media announcements.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: Democratic theory with a focus on deliberative democracy and proceduralist theories, measurement of deliberation.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: In addition to the work already pursued by DemocracyNet: stronger focus on schools and pursuing knowledge transfer with minors.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Generally speaking, I would benefit from institutionalized exchanges with scholars aiming at combining democratic theory and empirical assessments as well as democracy-activists. From an academic perspective, I would benefit from the opportunity to participate in small-scale workshops with people working in the same/related field(s).
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: As long as it concerns my area of research or real world-applications of the approaches relevant to this research field.
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Christian Ewert

christian.ewert@uzh.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: Other members have aroused my interest in this group.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I’m researching transnational regulation, global governance, and accountability, with a focus on private and hybrid governance. Are these manifestations of political power and authority democratic? If so, how? Should they be democratic at all, or are other forms of legitimization more relevant? Lastly, are these manifestation compatible with democratically governed societies?
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: That is a rather general question, and hence my answer shall be so as well: it depends. More important seems attitude to me: to be open and curious, and try to help each other out.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Maybe I would benefit in ways I cannot anticipate right now. Apart from that, I look forward to being connected with people who share similar interests then me, and to be participating in interesting events.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I don’t think I can put down “guidelines” or similar. As said, I believe it’s more about attitude. I am very open to good ideas, and if I can help, I will do so.
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Giada Gianola

giada.gianola@ipw.unibe.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: I have first heard of DemocracyNet as I am a member of the ecpr Standing Group on Democratic Innovations. I think that DemocracyNet is a really interesting and helpful association that enables to know other researcher who deal with democracy studies and to have a dialogue with the wider public. As my PhD focuses on digitalisation and democracy I trust that DemocracyNet is a wonderful opportunity to build a network with other researchers and learn more about democracy.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: My research focuses on digital democracy and online deliberation. Concretely, I will together with other researchers build an online platform where citizens can deliberate about Swiss votes and develop a smartvote questionnaire. I am open and I would be pleased to collaborate with other researchers in this filed and/or share the knowledge with them. The scope of my project is to test if such an online platform would work in Switzerland and under what conditions. This could be of interest also for a wider public and for the Swiss Public Administration. Thus, sharing my results with them would be important for me.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: Although in this period, it is quite difficult to organize in person workshop, I think that these could really help to know other researchers and share knowledge. I think that also bilateral meeting with researchers who work in the same field are really helpful. For a wider public, I think that public events like discussion and/or public lectures are a good way to spread the knowledge.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: For me, it would be important to know other researches in democracy studies, share our knowledge and experiences, and maybe develop collaboration. Moreover, sharing the knowledge with the wider public is also an important aspect, because the project I am working on has an important implementation component.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I commit myself to engage and to help in the organisation of the events/activities. I am really looking forward to know new researchers in the field of democracy studies so I am going to participate in events in order to meet new people and share my experience with them.
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Nargiz Hajiyeva

nargiz_hajiyeva@unec.edu.az

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: Currently, I am a Ph.D. candidate and International Relations Officer at the Department of International Cooperation, at Azerbaijan State University of Economics (UNEC) and a lecturer at International School of Economics at the same university.  I am an independent researcher and an honored member at Topchubashov Center, which is Baku-based think-tank in Azerbaijan. Briefly, I would like to give information concerning my academic career within the last three years. I am also leading the European Economy Research Center under the Azerbaijan State University of Economics, (UNEC) The center has been a pivotal instrument in organizing the scientific, theoretical and empirical analysis of the whole UNEC staff by mobilizing all professors and academic staff around the center. A new idea or discovery that the research center has produced or brought to use is merely for the benefit of the development of local communities. Azerbaijan State University of Economics UNEC. In 2017, the ERASMUS+ traineeship programme of the European Union supported me with the funding to do my internship as an independent diplomatic researcher at the International Relations Institute, Prague under the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Here, the institution provided me with an office to work independently on specific topics including Russian-Turkish Energy relations, and primarily European studies. With the help of an assigned supervisor, I worked on my own project based on an internship plan, which had to be submitted by me and agreed upon by the Institute and me prior to the start of the internship. In the end, after fulfilling the research project assigned to me, I submitted a publishable output to the Institution. The best part of my job in Prague was to attend seminars, workshops, and conferences held by different European institutions where I got extensive information about the Visegrad countries including their policies, political actions, and positions towards the European Union and other related information. As I knew the Russian language well, it was quite easy for me to get in touch with the policymakers, analysts and other interlocutors both in Russian and in English there. Apart from these, I am an author of different policy papers and articles relating to energy policy, global political economy, the EU affairs, human rights, foreign policy issue of various countries namely Iran, Turkey, Russia, and European countries. In 2016, because of my hard diligence, I published my first book called “Energy as a clash point of interests between Iran and Turkey in South Caucasus” in Dusseldorf, Germany. Through my experience, I have become well versed in formulating project goals, researching methods and testing parameters, analyzing data, and generating detailed reports. Additionally, I have the ability to integrate superior organization and communication skills across all levels of research, allowing me to excel in both independent and team-oriented environments and effectively lead research teams. Currently, I am going to organize the official presentation of my book titled “Didactical Guidelines Handbook on Writing a Doctoral Dissertation” in March at the university. The guidebook is intended to help international students organize and write a quality doctoral dissertation with the acquisition of analytical, investigative, artistic, and other aptitudes during the course of their doctoral studies at Azerbaijan State University of Economics, (UNEC). It also provides detailed information concerning academic writing skills based on their area of expertise.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: So that by applying for this membership, I would like to contribute my analytical, practical skills, critical thinking, and research objectives, which will be implemented through practical, work in your institution. I have more than a 5-year of experience in the field of government sectors including job and internship experiences altogether. By acquiring this position, I would like to demonstrate the highly significant contributions and knowledge within the international environment. Simultaneously, through my experience in administration and team collaboration, as well as my dedication to driving the success of business projects, I am confident that I would significantly benefit your organization.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: I am giving a try for myself to be part of your team. Not only do I will share my own practices and expertise, but also I will have an opportunity to learn many valuable things and acquire broad experiences within an international atmosphere. Thus, I do believe that I will make a substantial contribution to the Democracy Net family and my skills and your needs will be an outstanding fit.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I do believe that I will acquire much more valuable experience and know-how being the member of Democracy Net from Azerbaijan. Therefore, I can be of assistance providing reviewing, discussing current topics with professionals and young fellows
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: From assessing project objectives and coordinating technical and administrative support functions to managing budgets and balancing multiple priorities, my background has prepared me to excel in this role. My ability to advantageously plan for and achieve project goals—along with my excellent communication, research, and analytical capabilities—position me to thrive in this challenging position. I have also strong drafting, presentation, and reporting skills and am capable of providing policy advice in any situation. I am a driven person who works hard to attain my goals. The ability to overcome obstacles and follow things through to completion has always been a strong point of mine, which is why I have managed to thrive in such a competitive work environment. Therefore, I am ready to contribute my strong expertise on behalf of your institution. Precisely, with my project management and general organizational skills—backed by strong business acumen and dedication to achieving success—I am ready to meet the challenges of this role
Lea Heyne

lea.heyne@zda.uzh.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: The cooperative character of the network and the interdisciplinary approach, as well as the focus on democratic citizenship in Europe, which is an important topic for me.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: In my current research, I analyze individual attitudes towards democracy, which is closely related to the DemocracyNet agenda. Generally, meeting researchers from different fields and disciplines and sharing experiences is very valuable for me, as I work on an interdisciplinary topic connecting comparative politics, sociology and political psychology.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: Apart from small-scale conferences and workshops, co-authoring papers, maybe special issues, and organizing panels at bigger conferences would be interesting.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: To get new insights into other scholars’ research in the area of democracy and citizenship, and to receive feedback on my own work. And most importantly, by creating new projects and ideas in the course of the activities
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I am generally willing to invest time in the group activities as I believe that I can profit from the group a lot. Having clear aims, splitting tasks equally and producing (small-scale) outputs such as papers or panels would certainly enhance my motivation.
v
Johanna Huber

johanna.huber@unige.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
 A1: My interest is twofold. First, I think the association organizes wonderful events in order to exchange between (junior) researchers from the field. Second, I am very enthusiastic about the events the association organizes in order to communicate with the broader public.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
 A2: I work on democratic practices in alternative food associations and the workshop in September “Democratic Participation” showed me that there are many links between my research and other members who either work on democratic theory or on innovative participatory instruments.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  I think you already did a great job at the workshop in December with the different activities that you proposed: presentations, discussions and working group sessions to talk about plans.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: The kind of event like the workshop are a big added value for me as I got to exchange with junior researcher in a positive atmosphere was really encouraging for me and I got to meet very interesting people that gave me great inputs on my research.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: As I am in Geneva, it is more difficult for me to attend activities regularly in Zurich. However, as I have ties to Zurich I would be very excited to attend again a workshop or other type of activity, which gives the opportunity to exchange about our research. Also,if the event is longer than just a couple of hours it would make more sense to travel to Zurich.
    v
Deborah Kalte

deborah.kalte@fhnw.ch 

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: It struck me that PhD students created this group and has successfully managed to organize workshops and projects. The energy and dedication behind it fascinates me and I would like to be part of it and help continuing this great work.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I first came in contact with DemocracyNet by participating in a workshop and presenting a paper there, which was kind of a preliminary link. In general, the focus of interest of this group coincides greatly with my research focus, political consumerism as a new and unconventional form of political participation. Political participation is vital for a democracy and newer forms need to be evaluated. As far as I have understood, DemocracyNet fosters the study of new approaches to understand and explain democracy, and I think by participating in future activities I can add some value.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: The workshop that was held a few weeks ago was in my opinion a perfect example of such an activity that could take place more often (on an annual basis, as we have discussed in the workshop). What I really found a great idea was the Apéro Votations, where the elections were explained to the public. I think it is highly vital for academics to not only transfer their knowledge with each other, but to share it with the public. After all, we study not only for ourselves but for the greater good. There should be absolutely more events like these, also in the German speaking part of Switzerland.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I could benefit by being part in future projects, be it active or passive. I could also benefit from the valuable network. Also by maybe organizing a workshop with like-minded PhD students, which DemocracyNet is a perfect platform for this encounter.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I find it a great advantage that this group is rather “loose” and light. This makes it easier to integrate the activities of the group in one’s own work-life, which for me is very important. I am more than happy to take over some administrative tasks, which I really like to do. Seeing that my efforts are fruitful and do help the group is a great incentive, and it would be nice to be able to do my share.

 

Matteo Laruffa

mlaruffa@luiss.it

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: the quality of the networks and its members
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: in the initiatives (workshops, debates) which offer us important chances to exchange different points of view on common research interests
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: study groups, call for papers and common publications
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: by developing further my research with other scholars
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: clear division of responsibilities between members of the board and network, public transparency of its financial management
Libby Maman Burstein

libby.maman@mail.huji.ac.il

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: I am a PhD Candidate researching the varieties of democratic governance in regulatory administration design. I believe this platform has the potential for enhancing my own research by creating new professional collaborations, and can open new opportunities for me for sharing and learning.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: Since I am in the very beginning stage of my research, I am enthusiastic for collaborating with fellow researchers who share the same interest in democratic theory and research.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: A vivid, active, interesting Facebook group (or other platform), where members can share work in progress, get feedback, ask questions, will be very helpful to form a group. Also special projects, conferences, and a newsletter can help achieve both potential collaborations and knowledge transfer.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I am interested in finding co-authors for future articles I wish to write. In my university currently there isn’t any graduate student that studies democracy whatsoever. I believe co-writing is mutually beneficial especially since publishing is said to be the most important activity if one wishes for a position in academia. Second, it is always helpful to have others read and comment on your drafts and of course learning through the process of reading and commenting on others.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I am not sure I will be able to travel so often. But I am willing to invest time as much as needed to participate and even further develop the group.
Henri-Pierre Mottironi

Henri-Pierre.Mottironi@unil.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: In short, I am working on the field of democratic theory and I would like to work with and meet other scholars interested in issues related to Democracy.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: My PhD project is about weighted vote and the All-Affected interests principle, so my research interests are closely related to the questions on the boundaries of the political body, the legitimacy of majority rule, and political representation.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: I think: conferences, workshops, colloquiums. Not necessarily big ones, but what is important is to have a place to discuss papers (ours as those of others). Informal meetings are also important for me because you can discuss about your difficulties success and, more generally, exchange in a more relaxed way about your research.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Mostly, I would like to step out more from my “research bubble”. Especially, I am currently working in an history of though center of research and I feel sometimes a bit disconnected with contemporary political science and I think DemocracyNet is a good opportunity to do so.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I have many other responsibilities at the University at the moment (Librarian and website responsible for my center, member of the intern pool of experts for evaluation of the cursus, plus, of course, the seminal teachings), and it takes me time to do them well. But to answer, I would say that as long as it is not overly time-consuming, you can really count on me to co-organize punctual events, to help to set projects up, or to give a hand in more general matters.
Daniel Mususa

83dmususa@gmail.com

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: Most of my research work focuses on youth and democracy, active citizenship and the diverse barriers and constant changes to the democratic spaces that young people participate in, or would like to participate in. I am enrolling for phd studies in 2019 and see DemocracyNet as a good platform for me to interface with seasoned researchers, lecturers around this broad area of democracy
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: The link is the focus of my work and that of DemocracyNet. I am interested in growing my knowledge and analysis skills and perspectives on democracy, possibly to the point of become a lecturer and seasoned researcher too, on democracy. I particularly appreciate the potential of collaborative work with other members and how this can make for studies that factor in concepts (and misconceptions too) from diverse geographies and political landscapes. I would like to continue focusing on Active Citizenship and use texts, lessons and experiences from diverse regions of the world, which I think is the ambit of DemocracyNet
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: I think workshops both virtual and physical are important. Joint collaborative fundraising/proposal development to support the joint work including dissemination of results to students and researchers and other users
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I think the biggest benefit will be through accessing literature and works that I ordinarily would not be able to access, coming from a resource-challenged setting. Also, getting the chance to collaborate, even virtually initially, with a wide pool of senior researchers on Democracy is a huge benefit. Getting to play a part in the production of knowledge rather than merely consuming it, I see this a huge benefit too
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: If I manage to start my phd studies next year, my key consideration would be Relevance of the topic (tabled for input on the DemocracyNet platform). I believe that my first year will mainly be on refinement of my submitted phd proposal and that gives me a some time to dive deeply into literature facilitated by DemocracyNet membership. Another important factor for me would be the issue of financial resources because until I finish my studies, I will not be able to fund myself to physically attend workshops in Europe. Thus, I will make the most of resources available online (via email, skype, the DemocracyNet website etc)

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Sarah Perry

Sarah.Perry@mzes.uni-mannheim.de

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: The exchange of information and knowledge as well as the potential to coordinate and match different studies to allow for using different data together and providing more encompassing and valid research outputs that can actually help politics and society to improve governance.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: Improving the quality of democracy through research and transferring knowledge to society.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: Organizing and participating in workshops to coordinate different studies as well as the participation in conferences to make the achievements available to a broader public.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Getting knowledgeable feedback on my research as well as potentially having access to additional data for carrying out research that is broadly validated.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: Reliability, commitment, and actual common achievements.

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Lukas Peter

lukas.peter@ife.uzh.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: Getting to know and discussing with diverse scholars from different fields of democracy studies. Being able to collaborate and organize panels, workshops and events.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: My studies on democracy and commons might provide a different perspective to democratic theory that could possibly enrich the networks’ topics that it deals with. Furthermore, I would say that I am quite a dedicated doctoral student who is interested in organizing workshops and Events.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: Workshops, workshops and workshops.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I could benefit from this form of collaboration by widening my knowledge on different topics in democracy studies. Furthermore, I will be able to get to know people working on similar topics that I could collaborate with in the future.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: That I have the possibility to co-determine the topics discussed and the organization of the specific event.

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Laetitia Ramelet

laetitia.ramelet@gmail.com

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: It seems to be very dynamic and I am keen on exchanging with other scholars across disciplines.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I’m working on the connection between citizens’ consent and political legitimacy, which is particularly strong in democratic theory. My focus is on early modern political philosophy, and I also study contemporary debates on consent to see the links between both – on questions such as the following: what is consent? What is its moral value? How does it relate to imperatives of justice? And how can we identify the citizens’ consent?
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: I believe workshops with presentations suited for people working on different topics are extremely valuable, especially for young scholars. As for transfer to a wider audience, one thing I find particularly interesting at this stage are blog posts. I am also interested in the public events organized by the network.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Much to learn from other people’s works and ideas, as well as how they present their research to the public and contribute to public reflections – something that should be way more encouraged in academia, I think.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I would rather be a passive member this year as I am going to be on maternity leave, but very interested in participating in the community’s efforts whenever I can.
Jan-Erik Refle

jan-erik.refle@unil.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: Expertise and other young scholars in the group.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I work on democratic framing (for the thesis in Tunisia, now across Europe) and would love to promote democracy research.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: Looking whether common publications (journals , but also defacto) are possible, equally conference organization, book editing or the like.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Finding scholars with similar perspectives on democracy and enagement to write articles, books, conference proposals or grant applications.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: That depends on my future job from July on. But, else, let’s have a look how much it is.
Jonathan Rinne

rinne@soz.uni-frankfurt.de

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: I am very much interested in academic exchanges and collaborating with researchers working on similar topics. I think the existing DemocracyNet network provides an excellent ground for starting new projects, exchanging ideas with peers and giving and getting feedback on papers.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: In my research, I not only focus on understanding democratic innovations better, but also on developing new citizen participation procedures. Both research topics are important in the context of ongoing transformations of many existing (representative) democratic systems. I believe, it is equally important to make the results of such research accessible to the wider public. I try to live up to this task by engaging with the press to communicate research findings, but also by cooperating with municipalities to (experimentally) implementing new citizen participation procedures in the “real” world.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: I believe that periodically held workshops, on- and offline, are most important to foster knowledge transfer and kick off collaborations. Nonetheless, an internal newsletter also contributes.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Learn from other members’ perspectives, experiences, and knowledge.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: It is important that commitment is reciprocal, and the purpose and scope of participation is defined and transparent.
Olivier Ruchet

olivier.ruchet@uzh.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: I am a doctoral candidate at UZH in the DPDS program, and I would like to participate in, and benefit from, the activities organized by DemocracyNet. I know many members of the group and am impressed with the activities organized and the work accomplished.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: The core of my research is on democratic theory, so the link to DemocracyNet is rather obvious. My approach to democracy tends to be more normative, however, and as I understand many members of DemocracyNet focus their own research on democratic innovations broadly construed – I look forward to fruitful dialogues between the two perspectives.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: : I hope to participate in the forthcoming DemocracyNet conference at UZH in September. As for knowledge transfer, I will be happy to contribute what I can.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I think the networking aspect is obviously not negligible, and I also look forward to belonging to a community of peers involved in research on democracy, especially during the rather solitary stage of dissertation writing.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I would be happy to contribute to the group’s activities in many possible different ways – starting maybe with helping organize the next large conference, probably a bit over a year from now, or smaller workshops. I can also help with more mundane or day-t—day activities if needed.
Victor Luca Sanchez-Mazas

Victor.Sanchez-Mazas@unige.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: The opportunity of sharing ideas and developing projects with scholars of the same field.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: A part of my activities is exactly aimed to transfer knowledge to the society (notably: proposing democratic innovations for cantonal authorities).
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: Meetings, seminars, informal exchanges…
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I would benefit from the interactions with scholars knowing my field, which are pretty rare in my own university.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: It would depend on the usefulness of such commitment for my own projects, and more generally for the society as a whole.
Martha Sandoval

martha.sandoval@zda.uzh.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: The interaction with researchers from different disciplines that show interest in the analysis of Democracy.
The analysis and study of different aspects of democracy.
The collaboration with other young and experienced scholars.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: The interaction with researchers from different disciplines that show interest in the analysis of Democracy.
The analysis and study of different aspects of democracy.
The collaboration with other young and experienced scholars.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: I think in order to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer, it could be important to organize: workshops, panels, conferences, coffee/lunch talks.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I could benefit from the team work and the collaboration with the different members of DemocracyNet.
I could learn from different disciplinary approaches towards the study of Democracy.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I would be happy to invest my time, knowing that there’s the support of other members of the net, that there’s a sharing of tasks.

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Antoinette Scherz

scherz@em.uni-frankfurt.de

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
 A1: 1. Meeting people working on similar questions on the EU, democracy and citizenship.2. Making my research accessible.3. Learning more about practical issues of EU, democracy and citizenship.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
 A2: My research is focused on democracy in the EU but from a very theoretical perspective. So I would like to connect this theoretical knowledge to practical questions.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  1. Presentations of research results with connected discussion about application to practical issues2. Online working papers3. Workshops with specific issue open to the public
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: 1. Social network 2. Making my research accessible
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: The activities should not be to faraway from my own work.

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Maximilian Schubiger

maximilian.schubiger@ipw.unibe.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
 A1: The exchange of researchers in the field of democracy studies, more precisely also to get an overview who does what and who works on which issues and questions. As a network, it could also serve as a peer group to (mutually) revise and comment member’s papers and work in progress. And in the end, why not serve as a pool of potential co-authors for whatever project…
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
 A2: I feel that we all think to work on and investigate/research “so very important” questions that may not rise any interest in the public or in “the world out there”, so we all remain a kind of nerds that focus on very specific details within our field. I’d wish that it will be possible to foster the transfer of our scientific findings to the public or a broader community, not necessarily located within the scientific sphere. The challenge is to break down our findings to relevant statements to the society. And/or rise and formulate (new) questions, addressing peers of other disciplines.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  I think it could be interesting to organize something like workshops with media people in order to facilitate the transfer of genuinely scientific findings into societally interesting and relevant, but short articles. Researchers should try to serve interesting facts on a silver platter, so it might reach a broader public… in a popular scientific way.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: It could be exciting to keep a list of topics the association’s members are currently working on. Or an idea’s pool where members can look for co-authors, maybe through a forum? Both, however, seem to require quite intense administrative work.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I think that as long as I see a benefit for either the association or myself, I can imagine investing some time for the cause. Regarding the organization of events I can surely be asked for support.

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Arno Stirnimann

arnocarlmoritz.stirnimann@uzh.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: The interdisciplinary character of the group and the platform it offers to bring theoretical knowledge about democracy into a wider public, something which is not that easy in the purely academic context I am currently in. I was looking for a platform that enables knowledge and ideas about democracy to be brought to a wider public.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I see this link in the ability of the platform to encourage critical thinking about democracy, in the public realm. In Switzerland with its direct democracy this is even more necessary but also challenging since not always the better scientific argument wins the vote but also emotions. Our task is not to eliminate emotions but to contribute to informed arguments.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: Activities that bring researchers out of the bubble and engage with people potentially less interested in politics. Thinking of podcasts or public discussions like we do it with the Abstimmbar in Zurich.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Organizational support and a fun team to organize events with and to get in touch with people that are not necessarily in the academic field or not familiar with the kind of research I am doing.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: Solidarity among the members and that the work is distributed fairly among many shoulders, but also the ability to decide upon the extent of my commitment on my own. Further, the topic of the events needs to be of a particular interest to me and locally realizable.
Michael Strebel

michael.strebel@unil.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
 A1: The aim of bridging “boundaries” of various forms: getting in touch across different disciplines that investigate the same topic from different perspectives, establishing connections across countries to other researchers and interacting with the broader public.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
 A2: In my research area – public opinion and governance in metropolitan areas – there are different approaches to the topic within political science, but also beyond (e.g. public administration, critical geography and political philosophy). I find it at the same inspiring and very challenging to have inputs from all these different positions and to deal with their different views and approaches.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
 A3: To establish a regular exchange between the members of the network (since meeting in person is difficult, this would have to take the form of written exchange of some sort). Organize public events (podium discussions and public lectures), maybe blog posts on interdisciplinary projects/research findings/etc. or on debates that run parallel in different disciplines / fields and are not aware of each other / do not take each other into account.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
 A4: Exchange on how other scholars deal with the challenges of interdisciplinary research areas (see A.2) and what activities they pursue to engage in a dialogue with the “wider public”.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
 A5: I’m willing to invest time when there are projects with clear goals that several members pursue together.
Chiara Valsangiacomo

chiara.valsangiacomo@uzh.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: I am a PhD student at the University of Zurich within the Doctoral Program Democracy Studies, Alice el-Wakil introduced me to DemocracyNet.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I am writing a dissertation in political philosophy, more specifically democratic theory (topic: liquid democracy). Examples of my past work/experiences that are in line with your aims:
Research: I am currently organizing the interdisciplinary workshop ‘Political representation in democratic systems’ with Alice el-Wakil and Arno Stirnimann (https://democracynet.eu/ws2019/)
Transfer: I presented my work at the public event Karl Digital hosted by Karl der Grosse in Zurich (https://www.digitale-gesellschaft.ch/2018/10/18/vortraege-und-workshops-zur-digitalen-demokratie-karldigital-am-15-november-2018/)
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: Academic workshops, public lectures, public events.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Networking.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I am afraid it will be difficult to invest more time in the organization of group’s activities since I am currently self-financing my PhD. I would be glad to attend your events whenever possible and to participate to the annual general assembly.
Francesco Veri

francesco.veri@canberra.edu.au

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: I am a scholar in deliberative democracy. I am interested to share and discuss any issues/idea/findings within the field of democratic innovations with other scholars. I would like to encourage and contribute to the discussion on democratic innovations.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: As researcher in democratic innovation, I find in DemocracyNet a potential platform for developing strong collaboration with other scholars; exchanging my research findings and acquiring new ideas from other scholars.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: I am a comparatist and empirical scholar with strong methodological interests. I am happy to organize workshops or any type of events (e.g. forum, conferences, lectures) that involve empirical research and exchange of idea between practitioners and researchers.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I would be able develop strong relationship with young scholars and exchange ideas on possible research projects. Currently I am the convener of the Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance Seminar Series. The network would be an opportunity to encourage young scholars to present their own research findings or to visit our Centre.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5:I am happy to dedicate part of my time to grow the visibility of the group and promote the activity of the network in Australia.
Simone Wegmann

Simone.Wegmann@uni-potsdam.de

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: Most of the time scientific work means working alone. However, I think that research benefits enormously from collaborations not only allowing to co-author papers but also to get feedback on research. Finding people with similar interests might be difficult and I think an institution like DemocracyNet is an excellent setting to exchange ideas and meet with researchers working on similar topics.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I think my research on political attitudes in democracies and its link to parliamentary institutions fits nicely into the broader research area of DemocracyNet. I am currently in my last year as a PhD student and I have several ongoing paper projects and research ideas. I think DemocracyNet is an ideal platform to exchange these ideas and maybe also find people interested in collaborations or organization of Events.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  I think regular workshops are a productive way to start new collaborations and exchange ideas. Beyond that, proposing sections or panels at other national and/or international conferences might be a way to promote research on democracy more generally. Further, regular workshops or roundtables including practitioners/non-academic groups might be useful to bridge academic research and “the real world”. Regularly publishing articles/summaries of research as blog posts might also be beneficial to knowledge transfer as these are much more accessible than research papers for people outside academia.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I think I could benefit most from regular exchange on research ideas and events, and from organizing events together.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I think certain flexibility on the point and amount of time to invest is important. But I think this is probably true for all members as we all have other binding commitments and deadlines. But I am absolutely willing to invest time on a regular basis and also to commit to specific events
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Rebecca Welge

mail@rebeccawelge.eu

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1:By establishing professional relations among young scientists of different disciplines, different countries, and with different perspectives, one can create synergies, give more visibility to the topic, and foster fruitful collaborations. That was my motivation to build DemocracyNet.eu.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: My own research looks at the Significance of EU Citizenship for Individuals in terms of Institutional Opportunities and Perceptions. Besides Academia, I work as a trainer for citizenship education and intercultural learning.  I am interested in research and projects about citizenship and would like to foster exchange.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  According to my experience, it is most effective to produce something together (see A5).  I am convinced that collaborations based on common interests and mutual learning processes are one of the most productive ways of learning and working.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I am truly convinced that we learn always something from exchange with others. Especially, the exchange between different disciplines and between academics and practitioners is crucial to broaden one’s mind. Generally, I would like to learn more about the development of citizenship in research and practice.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I would like to work on some potential mid-term outputs of collaborations such as a DemocracyNet workshop, trainings, joint conference panels, a publication of a special issue, co-authored papers in academic journals, public newspapers, etc. In general, interest and commitment of others is also important for my own motivation.
Former members

*Marew Abebe
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: It will help me to have more contacts with academicians and researchers in the same area of specialization. It will also create a platform where academic debates to be discussed, too.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I saw from the website of the DemocracyNet
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: Research, academic conferences and other similar platforms.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I will help me to get experiences and have the required knowledge regarding the ongoing researches done on democracy and related topics. I will also share my researches done about Africa and in particular Ethiopia where democracy has been a dream for most of such states and needs elucidated investigation.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I am committed to take my responsibility and willing to work with groups. Respecting others views and meet deadlines are my common guidelines for my commitment. I will invest my time by discussing our research and possible areas for further activates.
*Gema Garcia Albacete
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: Academic and personally I am interested in the “realization” of democratic citizenship, how do citizens relate to the political world and how we can enhance citizens’ opportunities to participate in decision-making processes.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: My research focuses on political behavior and the development of political orientations in Western democracies, which I think it is at the core of democratic citizenship. I am interested in the academic exchange between the members of the group and also on the possibilities to collaborate in future research projects.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  Regular academic meetings but also informal contact among the members
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Academic feedback, motivation to start new projects and support to push them forward.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: Common interests, shared responsibility and members’ commitment.

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*Karin Bachmann
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: Carrying out research, I would like to generate some practical value what is impossible without exchanging ideas with like-minded people.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: Functioning civic culture is an essential element of long-term democracies.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  Members of the network should be willing to meet each other.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I would like to be acquainted with like-minded people in Switzerland most. In return, I can offer manifold contacts in Central and Eastern Europe.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I am about to do all that generates practical value too.
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*Jan Pieter Beetz
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: The intellectually stimulating meetings in Zurich on Demoi-cracy and Democracy and the open and friendly atmosphere as well as entrepreneurial sensibilities.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I believe that exchange of ideas between theorists and empiricists is crucial for insightful research into democracy and citizenship within the European political landscape. Moreover, good research projects and their funding depend upon cross-border collaborations between scholars often from different (sub)disciplines.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: Organizing workshops, applications for funding, and co-author papers would be three key activities.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: The collaboration with other scholars stimulates intellectually and hopefully results in publications. In addition, more organizational activities will improve important skills for future academic undertakings.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I would be willing to invest time, if there are clear aims, responsibilities and commitment. Further, I would need space in my schedule at a particular time to take on extra activities. To ensure, I can fulfill my obligations to the best of my ability.
*Jørgen Bølstad
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
 A1: The topics covered relate to mine.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
 A2: I do research on political behavior and representation, often in the European context, so research on democracy, citizenship and representation in the EU is of interest to me.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: It is hard to say. For me personally, such things have mainly taken place without being planned, but it tends to be promoted by friendship and shared interests.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
 A4: I could benefit from the knowledge of others, such as their specialized knowledge of data sources, topics or literatures, which may point me towards fruitful research designs.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
 A5: I need to keep some focus on activities that lead to tangible outcomes, like publications in good journals, but I am also trying to play a positive role for the research of others – within reasonable limits.

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*Karima Bousbah
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: I’m particularly interested in this group because the focus of my research (my PhD research) is focused on the political participation of young citizens. Given that my focus in not specifically set on the European Union per se, I could definitively profit from this additional perspective. Furthermore, I particularly welcome the idea of sharing academic research with the (broad) public.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: As already mentioned above, my main research focus is on political participation. In addition to get useful input and feedback about my research, the main link between my own research and the group’s aims would be in the knowledge transfer to society.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: In addition to regular meetings between the group members, I’d suggest to develop an active transfer to society. For instance this could be achieved both through a public space (e.g. website), nurturing a relationship to the press/media and organizing panels/(conferences).
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I could definitively profit from the exchange among group members.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: All members share their commitment and contribute equally to the group’s goals. Nevertheless, the additional workload should not alter the balance between my work at the University and my own research.
*Valeria Camia
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
 A1: the need to stay touch with peers working on similar research field as myself
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
 A2: research topic and interests in knowledge transfer
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: joint papers, seminar on specific topcis
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
 A4: by participating to meetings and online forum, thereby contributing to knowledge exchange
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
 A5: time -constraints  due to PhD project may make it difficult to find a satisfactory balance between personal interests in the group and actual time to be invested in group’s activities. Trust and personal contacts with peers may facilitate commitment.
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*Costica Dumbrava
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
 A1: The group promises to focus on areas related to my own research agenda. I like that it is transnational, dynamic and that it aims at bridging academics and the ‘real’ world.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
 A2: My upcoming PhD thesis deals with ethno-cultural preference in access to citizenship in EU countries. It analyses national rule and international law norms on citizenship/nationality from the perspective of applied normative theory. My broader research interests include: migration and integration, citizenship, ethnicity and nationalism, EU and democracy.  I am confortable with legal and historical methods and with empiric-normative political theory. As I see it, the cores of my interests seem to be shared by the group.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
 A3: I will be interested in exchanging knowledge (web forum, email lists, expertise pool, event alerts), setting up projects that benefit from the wide knowledge across disciplines and countries (e.g. democratic observatories), organizing workshops or conferences and publishing.   
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
 A4: This is a good way to keep in touch with fresh research and a great recipe for expanding it.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
 A5: As nearly graduate, I have a lot of breath and motivation. Apart from academic involvement I could also take some organizational tasks online. Occasionally I could travel.

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*Mónica Ferrín Pereira

monica.ferrin@philos.uzh.ch

Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: This group aims at researching the key topic of my dissertation: democracy in Europe. In my research, I analyze democracy from the point of view of the European citizens. What do they want? Do they like their democracies? Do they like Europe as a democracy?…
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: Because the thesis is mostly a personal effort, collaboration with other scholars is the next step, now that I have quite a good understanding of my dissertation topic.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: As a first stance, knowing each others’ interests is fundamental to achieve collaborations. A few meeting would be necessary for this purpose, complemented by an active online platform.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: My research can clearly benefit from the network on Democracy and Citizenship in Europe. It is of most importance at the final stage of my thesis to get the opportunity, as a young scholar, to be involved in a network which connects people with similar interests. In fact, it is a perfect platform for young scholars to transform similar interests in common projects.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: If the collaborative network is to succeed, equal commitment of everybody is needed, so that both the efforts and the benefits are fairly distributed among its members. In that case, I am very willing to invest time in the group’s activities.
*Jean-Paul Gagnon
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: I was introduced to DemocracyNet at the 2018 workshop in Zurich and became enchanted by the members and DemocracyNet’s aims. I really liked the emphasis on face-to-face public outreach – it’s such an important and underdone aspect of our work as scholars of democracy.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I have been collecting thousands of adjectives of democracy and, as explained in my public lecture on September 13, 2018, feel that there’s much work to be done around understanding this diversity of expressions. DemocracyNet’s panels and public events are superb forums for telling the story of/exploring one or more of democracy’s meanings.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: There is, of course, traditional paper writing which in my experience can spark collaboration at workshops, conferences, and serendipitous meetings whilst visiting a campus. Then there are public-focused events such as panels consisting of a mix of academics, artists and practitioners that tend to be reported on by uni-based journalists – these can be great spaces for knowledge transfer (if done well – catering is key!).
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I celebrate new research and crave knowledge (possibly an obsession). I also love the intellectual lifestyle and sharing ideas socially. So being a member of DemocracyNet satisfies my internal drivers. I’m also founding an Institute for the Philosophy of Democracy and would like to eventually partner with DemocracyNet so as to co-badge mutually interesting democracy events in Europe and abroad.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: It depends on what is being offered and also how busy I am with teaching and training my research students. Generally, I follow my nose and support activities as best I can if I feel they are in line with my ethics and norms (a big norm is the promotion of democracy education for members of the public, especially practitioners!).
*Corinne Gastaldi
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
 A1: This group is probably interesting for us because it bring together people of different nationalities with some experiences, some point of view on the EU citizenship that it would be great to share.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
 A2: We are auditioning experts, political and researcher to have more information about initiatives in France but we are looking for some contact in different european member states to realize a really european study, that’s why your initiative is interesting.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  a web-platform which allows to share some documents about research on this subject
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: to share documents (articles, studies, interview…on )
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: We can for example participate at conference on different european subject but also invite the member of the group to attend to the conference which we are organising throughout the year.

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*Laszlo-Zoltan Kovats
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: Considering the general debate about democracy, citizenship, and the relation between the state, government and the people, I have one central impression: there is a wide gap between the theoretical (scientific) and the practical (real-world) discussions. It appears to me that there is too little scientific work that includes the practical implementation of theoretical concepts and that concrete initiatives do rarely relate to theoretic knowledge when conceptualizing their projects. I would like to develop ideas how to close this gap and transposing theoretical insights into concrete implementation strategies. DemocracyNet.eu appears to me having such a progressive stance on these topics offering an ideal platform to exchange ideas and come up with new co-operations.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: My current research focuses mainly on two issues: first, I work on EU-politics in general and on the democratic representation and responsiveness in the European Parliament in particular. Second, I work in a project of the 7th Framework Program of the EU on the development and implementation of new forms of citizen participation in municipal decisions. Here, I am actually confronted with the problem that there are excellent theoretical approaches to the topic of citizen participation but concrete implementation strategies are widely lacking. I would like to take opportunity to share and discuss my experiences and outputs of my work and bring them up for discussion on DemocracyNet.eu.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  I would be interested in participating in fora and conferences about the topics mentioned above and share my output. Exchanging ideas with other researchers in this field, there might be opportunities for further collaboration in joint projects on democratic participation and citizenship in particular. I would also like to engage in a discussion about the future of European democracy.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I would like to learn more about the how new concepts of democratic governance could be implemented in the real world. I would like to use that knowledge and the ideas that are developed in this context to conceptualise and implement new projects. More concretely, I would like to start concrete initiatives and to apply for funding for them.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I am willing to share my personal research output on DemocracyNet.eu, including papers, outputs of field research and presentations as well as my personal network with colleagues that are open for new concepts and are free of ideological thinking about democracy and citizenship. It would be very important for me not to be forced into a specific school of thought and having the freedom to take an unconventional perspective.
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*Patrick Krenz
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: As a PhD student I would like to meet and to connect to other young scholars interested in the same questions as I am.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I look at a quite new phenomenon, creative participation, which is possibly the expression of a changed understanding of citizens and their role towards representative institutions and democracy. But as there are many other implications, exchange among scholars from different fields is valuable.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  I think personal meetings from time to time are necessary to establish trustful relationships among the group members. The meetings should always be guided by a defined goal and/or topic. Online discussion and talk via skype are good means for the time in between.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I’m interested in the exchange and reflection of my work with scholars not only working specifically on political participation in order to get a broader view and to see my work from different angles. The other way round, I’m very interested in research from other fields and the discussion about it.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: In my view, the group should foster academic exchange among young scholars to improve their work and find possibilities for collaboration. This should happen as informal as possible. I’m not interested in investing effort in the group for the group’s sake only; the goals mentioned should always be the yardstick.
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*Sebastian Kubitschko
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: First, the idea of academic exchange beyond (often limiting) conference settings. Second, the collaborative approach towards academic research. Third, the explicit connection between “theory” and “practice”.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: Situated at the intersection of media and political sociology, my research is focusing on (civic) efforts to shift democratic legitimacy and to change the boundaries of the political in Germany and the EU. More precisely, I analyse civic collectives and the role information and communication resources play in their struggle for political influence. Instead of being captivated by signs of the potential for empowerment through technological developments, I point towards the dichotomy that the utilization of media technologies and infrastructures comprise between action and order, or, put differently, between opportunities and actualities.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:  Regular workshops (annually or bi-annually), shared online platform (public or semi-public).
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: Widening of research agenda, critical feedback from diverse outlooks, sharing of experiences and knowledge.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: Allocation of tasks, assigned capacities/roles for “members”, a “responsible” institutional centre, a minimum membership figure (of at least around 10-15).

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*Arndt Leininger
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: The fact that it is a network of early stage researchers that aims to foster cooperation and exchange of ideas aroused my interest. The thematic focus on democratic citizenship, particular political participation as well as an emphasis of context as determinant of outcomes of interest also got me interested in the group.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: At least part of my dissertation work seems to be directly related to interests of the group. I am interested in what shapes citizens’ support for direct democracy, which is very popular across a lot of democracies. Here, I am not just interested in individual level factors but also contextual factors that might directly affect support for direct democracy or condition the effect of individual level factors. I am also interested in how direct democracy influences people’s attitudes towards democracy.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: Apart from workshops and events I think a good low effort use of the network would be the sharing of calls and seeking advice on specific matters from colleagues, e.g. asking for volunteers to critically read a draft paper or seeking help on methodological issues.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: I hope to be able to get feedback on my work and to learn about current activities and developments in the field of democracy research.
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I would be important for me that a commitment to contribute is to be based on clear goals – what is to be delivered and what is to be achieved. Also, having tangible outputs, which could be a presentation or publication, would serve to strengthen my commitment.
*Lisa Pilgram
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: Opportunities to network with other scholars working on citizenship, political subjectivities. Possible research collaboration for ‘Oecumene: Citizenship after Orientalism’ project.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: links between democratic theory, political theory, political subjectivity.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: Newsletter, member info, exploring research collaboration, bidding.
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: see above A3
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: If interesting research collaborations evolve from the exchange. Oecumene project is currently looking to expand its networks.
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*Jan W. van Deth
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: My interest in this groups concerns the topic selected (citizenship)
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: My own research is linked to the aims by focusing on changes in (a) participation and (b) political attitudes, especially norms and values. Besides, my work usually is comparative
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: For collaboration and knowledge transfer it is essential to produce together something (a book, website, conference etc)
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: One can always benefit from exchanges. More specifically I hope to learn more about the concept “citizenship” and about (empirical) findings about developments in citizenship under different conditions
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I am willing to invest time if the group (a) consists of interesting people willing to collaborate and (b) if the aims of the groups cover feasible products ( see A3)
*Kateřina Vráblíková
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
 A1: I like that it is a network open to young scholars at the beginning of their careers who work on a similar topic and want to collaborate.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
 A2: The described aims perfectly match my research interests – I work on political participation, democratic attitudes, social movements and I want to get connected with people having similar interests and style of work. I also see a potential of the network to be a great source of feedback that everyone needs.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
 A3: conferences and workshops, commenting on papers
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
 A4: I will benefit from events that have academic relevance: meeting people who work on similar topics, learning from them, getting feedback. 
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
 A5: I am happy to contribute with academic type of things – participation and organization of conferences and workshops, giving comments to other people’s work and projects, preparing common publications and research projects. I am ready to help with organization and administration related to that.
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*Claudia Wiesner
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: My research interest as well as my practical interest in Europan Citizenship and democracy in the EU.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I am interested in fostering the diaouge between academics and practitioners as well as in participating in a forum of exchange and collaboration for researchers in the field of Democracy and Citizenship in Europe.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: circulation of information, research results etc. / developing common projects and or research ideas / use as a platform for contacts, networking and queries / meetings and workshops
Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: by learning about research ideas and results / by networking and visits / by meeting / by developing common projects
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: link to my research and practical interests.
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*Jack Williams
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: The lecture series organized at the UZH.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: I am very interested in looking at ways to engage the broader public in discussions about democracy – how it works and when it doesn’t as well as looking at new and dynamic ways to educate people on issues in democracy.
Q3: In what way could you benefit from being part of DemocracyNet.eu?
A3: To get in touch with other scholars and practitioners who are interested in establishing new types of ways to reach people.
Q4: What kind of activities do you consider to be important to organize in order to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A4: Interaction with the public and policy makers as well as bringing together researchers from different disciplines. I think that it’s important to create content alongside workshops etc. (I particularly like the podcasts on the website 😉
Q5: What activities would you have interest in co-organizing (be as specific as possible; you can include topics or locations)?
A5: Moderating discussions, interviewing panelists, organizing interdisciplinary workshops (particularly interactive workshops).
Q6: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A6: Flexibility regarding the choice of activities I would be participating in.
*Mira Wolf-Bauwens
Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: At first I learned about the group and its activities through Alice. I am inspired by its focus on interdisciplinarity. Moreover, the lecture series Bridging Facts and Norms captures one of the core motivations of doing my PhD: to encourage the dialogue between political theory, political science and the general public.
Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: As mentioned above one of the key motivators for my research is the aim to participate and further encourage the dialogue between theory and practice. For instance, my research project aims to ‘use’ political theory in order to find a normative corrective for the declining democratic participation and increasing gap between citizens and political institutions. In doing this research I seek to look further than ‘just’ political theory and hope for my research to be interesting beyond the spheres of political theory i.e. for political scientist and/or the general public as well.
Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3:I would be very keen on working together with political scientist who focus on democratic participation. Particularly, I would like to learn more about research regarding the motivation to participate politically. On the one hand, this kind of research often lacks a sound normative reflection and on the other hand, discussions of participation in political theory often lack reference to sound empirical studies. I would be keen on collaborating with members of the network on this topic.

In addition to that, I would be very interested in furthering the methodological discussion regarding including insights from political sciences in normative theory by including the ‘political science perspective’. If another member/other members were interested in this methodological debate, it could be of great value to discuss this (and eventually write paper together).

Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4:In addition to what I have written under Q3, by being a member I hope to become better aware of the key research topics in political science. If there was a forum where we could exchange what is currently ‘hot’ in political science (and political theory vice versa), this would be a great benefit for me (as I am convinced that the two disciplines ought to communicate more).
Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities?
A5: I am very happy to invest time as long as I know that I am working in a team that is contributing equally/with an equal amount of motivation and enthusiasm
*Julia Würtz
 Q1: What arouses your interest in this group?
A1: I write a phd-thesis about European value orientations and how to convey them in European education. Therefore I really much appreciate the idea of having an academic exchange with other researchers about the topic EU Democracy and Citizenship. With regard to our shared topic it is interesting for me to collaborate with people all over Europe and from different research disciplines. Since I am also working in the field of EU citizenship education, I think it is a great initiative to connect research and practice.
 Q2: Where do you see the link between your research and activities and the described aims?
A2: Between the topic of my phd-thesis and the shared topic EU Democracy and Citizenship there is a close link: My research questions are e.g., what are European value orientations of young Europeans and what kind of values should education convey to support the idea of EU citizenship.Furthermore I see a link between my practical work in the field of European education and EU citizenship education and the idea of this network to transfer knowledge into society.
 Q3: What kind of activities would be important to achieve collaborations and knowledge transfer?
A3: In my opinion there are three activities which are important – all have been mentioned in the presentation above: First a permanent contact possibility via an existing online tool. Secondly, from time to time personal group meetings. Third, a kind of governance structure in order to work effectively.
 Q4: What would be an added value for you? Put differently, in what way could you benefit?
A4: For me it is a value to have a network of researchers (and practitioners) in the field of EU Democracy and Citizenship. Because very often it is not important what you know, but it is important, who you know. I like the idea of “give and take” in a network relationship.
 Q5: What are important guidelines for your commitment? Under what circumstances would you be willing to invest time in the group’s activities? A5: Of course there should be a general agreement on the guidelines of the network. Furthermore it would be important to have reliability in the group. Each member should feel responsible for the common aims.