University of Siegen


The University of Siegen was founded in 1972 and has quickly developed into a centre of quality research and teaching in the ‘three-border-region‘ of the Hessen, Rhineland Palatine and North Rhine Westphalia states, with more than 19,000 enrolled students. It maintains extensive cooperation with numerous universities and research institutions all over the world and partnerships with over 130 European universities. Research work is conducted at the Faculty of Arts‘ own ‘Centre for Research in the Social Sciences‘ (SOWiS). The SOWiS aims to enhance social science research in five core areas of general concern, amongst them European studies, political sociology, social problems, and social policy. It hosts a series of empirical research projects funded by institutions like the German Research Council, the European Commission and other national and international agencies.


Christian Lahusen is the principal investigator for the German team. He holds a Chair of Sociology in the Faculty of Arts at Siegen University. He studied sociology in Düsseldorf and Madrid, received his PhD from the European University Institute (Florence) and obtained his habilitation from the University of Bamberg. His research interests include the sociology of European societies and European integration, social movements and civil societies, social problems and social exclusion. Lahusen is well experienced with various methodological approaches, amongst them, qualitative research, statistical analyses, and comparative case studies. He has directed and participated in a number of national and international research projects on topics relating to contentious politics, civil society and social exclusion, most of them with a European and comparative perspective. His research has been funded by the German Research Council, the EU and other national and international funding agencies. He was a participant in EU-funded projects such as UNEMPOL (EU FP5), YOUNEX (EU FP7) and LIVEWHAT (EU FP7) and is currently coordinator and investigator of TransSOL (H2020). Publications include 12 books and edited collections and more than 70 articles and book chapters, published by leading national and international publishers and journals. For up-to-date information, please visit Christian's staff page.

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Johannes Kiess  is a research member at the Department of Social Sciences at the Faculty of Arts at University of Siegen. He holds an M.A. from the University of Leipzig where he studied political science, sociology and philosophy. He also studied Middle East Studies at the Ben Gurion University of the Negev in BeerSheva, Israel. His research interests include European integration and European societies, interest group research and industrial relations, as well as right-wing extremism, political participation and societal (dis)integration. His PhD project investigates the strategic framing of the financial and Euro crisis by trade unions and business associations. Since 2010 he is part of a research group at University of Leipzig surveying right-wing extremism in Germany (2002-2016). He previously was a researcher in the EU-funded project LIVEWHAT (FP 7). In addition, Johannes was a visiting researcher at the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies, Cologne, and at Georgetown University, Washington D.C. Currently he is a researcher in both TransSOL (H2020) and EURYKA (H2020). He has published numerous articles and book chapters in both German and English. For up-to-date information, please visit Johannes' staff page .