Observatory on Political Parties and Representation > People


Co-Founders and Co-Directors

PeterMairPeter Mair † was Professor of Comparative Politics at the European University Institute, and was Head of the Department of Political and Social Sciences from 2007 to 2010. He previously held the Chair of Comparative Politics at Leiden University in the Netherlands, where he was later Honourary Professor. Since 2001 he was co-editor of West European Politics. He published extensively in the field of comparative European politics. Prof. Mair co-founded the OPPR and has been its co-director until he suddenly passed away in 2011.


BardiLuciano Bardi is Full Professor of Political Science at the University of Pisa, where he teaches courses in Comparative Politics, European Union Politics, and International Relations. He was also Chair of the Executive Committee of the European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR). He has published extensively in the field of Comparative European Politics and on EU Parties and Party System. Prof. Bardi co-founded the OPPR and has been co-director since its foundation.


Kriesi_HanspeterHanspeter Kriesi studied sociology at the Universities of Bern, Zurich and Chicago. He obtained his PhD in sociology at the University of Zurich (1976), where he also did his Habilitation in sociology (1980) and in 2002 took up the chair for comparative politics. In 2012 he was appointed to the Stein Rokkan Chair at the SPS Department of the EUI. His research fields are comparative politics, political sociology, political behaviour, electoral behaviour, political communication, political participation, social movements. He replaced Prof. Mair as co-director of OPPR.


Advisory Committee

The Observatory on Political Parties and Representation Advisory Committee is composed by a international network of scholars specialized on European party politics. Its members are Ingrid van Biezen (Leiden University), Zsolt Enyedi (Central European University), David Farrell (University College Dublin), Simon Hix (London School of Economics), Laura Morales (University of Leicester), Thomas Poguntke (University of Düsseldorf), Tapio Raunio (Tampere University), and Aleks Szczerbiak (University of Sussex).



LorenzoCicchi smallLorenzo Cicchi (PhD IMT Institute for Advanced Studies, 2013) is currently research and teaching assistant at the University of Pisa and visiting fellow at the Schuman Center for Advances Studies, where he coordinates the OPPR activities. Previously he was research associate at the European University Institute (2015-2016) and post-doctoral research fellow at Fondazione Luigi Einaudi in Rome (2014-2015). He recently published "Is Euro-voting truly supranational? National affiliation and political group membership in the European Parliament" (Pisa University Press, 2016), and for the OPPR he also co-authored the follow-up on "How to develop a trans-national party system in Europe" (2014). His research focuses on political parties, elections and EU politics and institutions, in particular the European Parliament where in 2012 he worked as parliamentary assistant for an italian MEP. 



Edoardo Bressanelli (PhD EUI, 2012) is lecturer in European Politics at the Department of European and International Studies, King’s College London. His research focuses on political parties, EU policy-making and Italian politics. He recently published Europarties after Enlargement: Organization, Ideology and Competition (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014). His work has appeared, or is forthcoming, in journals like Comparative Political StudiesEuropean Union PoliticsJournal of European IntegrationJournal of European Public Policy. With the OPPR, he contributed to the 2010 Report “How to Create a Transnational Party System” and the 2014 Report “Political Parties and Political Foundations at European Level”. Contact: [email protected]

Enrico Calossi was coordinator (2011-2015) of the OPPR activities. He obtained his PhD in Political Systems and Institutional Change at IMT-Lucca in 2009 and with OPPR he worked as an external collaborator for the project on "How to develop a trans-national party system in Europe". He was post-doc research fellow at Pisa University (2011-2013) and he is now teaching fellow at the California State University International Program in Florence. His main research interests are comparative politics (elections, political parties and Europarties), political corruption, and Italian and European foreign policy. Contact: [email protected]

Wojciech Gagatek defended his PhD at the EUI in 2008. His thesis was on the organization of political parties at EU level. He is currently based in the Centre for Europe at the University of Warsaw, but continues to be extensively involved with OPPR activities. He has edited an e-book on the 2009 European Parliament elections in all 27 member states, and was Team Leader for Poland in the EU profiler project. He has been developing an extensive network of contacts between OPPR and Europarty organisations, with a view to future opportunities for joint collaboration. Contact: [email protected]

Eugenio Pizzimenti is Assistant Professor of Comparative Politics at the Department of Political Sciences, University of Pisa. He is member of the Observatory on Political Parties and Representation of the European University Institute’s Schuman Centre, where he has been visiting fellow (2010-2013). He has bee researcher at the Regional Institute for Economic Planning of Tuscany (2003-2006) and research fellow at the University of Bologna (2008-2010). His research interests focus on representative democracy, particularly party politics. He is author or co-author of publications in the field of political finance regime and party organizational change, in Italy and at EU level. Contact: [email protected].


Other researchers working on political parties

OPPR also promotes doctoral training in political science, with several EUI researchers and alumni actively involved in its research and organisational activities. Below is the list of (previous and current) Marie Curie and Max Weber fellows, PhD researchers, interns and other reserachers who collaboraated with OPPR.


Marie Curie Fellows 

Duncan McDONNELL Research themes: Populism, Western European Political Parties and Democracy. Period of stay: September 2012 - September 2014. Contact: [email protected] 

Takis PAPPAS (University of Macedonia, Thessaloniki, Greece). Research themes: Political Leadership and Political Elites. Democracy, Democratization, Democratic Workings. Poalitical Parties, party Systems, and Party System Change. Period of stay: September 2011 - september 2013 


Max Weber Fellows 

The Max Weber Fellows are part of a programme financed by the European Commission. They are post-doctoral researchers spending one or two years at the Institute, a number of whom are affiliated with the Department of Political and Social Sciences.

Kyriaki NANOU Research themes: comparative politics, inluding elections and parties within Europe; The governance of the European Union; Europeanisation and democratic deficit; Quantitative and qualitative research methods; Rational choice theory and political economy.

Galina ZAPRYANOVA Research themes: political behaviour and party; determinants of attitudes towards the European Union in the new Member States, esp. the interplay between domestic and EU-level factors.

Amie KREPPEL (University of Florida) Research themes:Legislatures and Political Institutions, Political Systems. Amie Kreppel is a Jean Monnet Chair (ad personam) and serves as Director of the University of Florida's Title VI funded Center for European Studies (CES) and the European Union funded Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence. She is an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science. Dr. Kreppel has written extensively on the political institutions of Europe in general and the European Union more specifically. Her publications include a book on the Development of the European Parliament and Supranational Party System, published by Cambridge UP (2002) as well as articles in a wide variety of journals including Comparative Political Studies, the British Journal of Political Research, European Union Politics, the European Journal of Political Research, Political Research Quarterly, the Journal of European Public Policy and the Journal of Common Market Studies. Dr. Kreppel is a founding member of the transatlantic European Parliament Research Group (EPRG) and was a Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington DC. In addition, she has served as international visiting faculty at the Université Louis Pasteur (ULP), Strasbourg, France, the Institute für Höhere Studien (Institute for Advanced Studies), Vienna, Austria, and the Institut d'Etudes Européennes, Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), Brussels, Belgium. She currently sits on the Executive Committee of the Conference Group on Italian Politics, the European Politics and Society section of the American Political Science Association and the European Union Studies Association. She has received numerous grants to pursue research and program development related to Europe and the European Union including a MacArthur Fellowship, a grant from the Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation, two internal research grants form the University of Florida and Title Vla (UISFLP) and Title VI grants form the US Department of Education, as well as several grants from the European Union.


PhD Researchers

Baiba Baltvilka's project is "National Political Parties and Europeanization: A New Threat for the Former?". Contact: [email protected]

Angelos Chryssogelos's project is "'Party Systems and Foreign Policy Change: A Comparative Analysis of Cases of Party-Based Contestation of Foreign Policy". Contact: [email protected]

Jorge Fernandes is a doctoral researcher at the EUI, currently working on a dissertation whose aim is to analyse the impact of the nature of government, especially coalitions, in the organization of the legislative branch. His main research interests are parliaments, executive-legislative relations and political parties. Contact: [email protected]

Caterina Froio's project is a comparative study on the influence of partisan preferences on governmental activity in 9 countries for the period 1980-2008. Instead of exploring the “Do parties matter?” question by focusing on the link between partisan preferences and policies implemented, this thesis focuses on the influence of partisan preferences on governmental activity. The main question that this dissertation would address is the following: To what extend partisan preferences influence governmental activity? In other words, to what extend partisan preferences are accommodated into the governmental agenda? Caterina’s research interest includes political parties, party systems, far-right parties, public policy and democratic theory. She is working as research assistant in the Comparative Agendas Project. Contact: [email protected]

Josef Hien is a doctoral researcher whose thesis explores how different societal groups reacted and adapted to the advent of industrialized capitalism and its recurrent crisis. This is investigated through an ideational study of the evolution of Catholic Social teaching and the role it played in the formation of the Continental-Conservative welfare regimes in Europe. By doing so the thesis will also shed light on the socio-economic foundations of Christian Democracy, one of the most influential political movements in Continental Europe throughout the past seventy years. Hien has a special interest in the fields of Comparative Political Economy, Party Politics, Welfare State, Collective Action and Institutional Theory. Contact: [email protected]

Conor Little's PhD project at the EUI is a comparative study of Green parties in government coalitions. It measures the policy, office and electoral outcomes of these parties, and seeks to specify the role of party attributes and party strategies in causing these outcomes. With colleagues at the EUI and the Univeristy of Bremen, he is working on a collaborative project on ministerial careers. He was the team leader for Ireland during the EU Profiler project. Contact: [email protected]

Mathieu Petithomme's project is "The Europeanization of National Party Politics". Contact: [email protected]

David Willumsen is a doctoral researcher at the EUI. His thesis explores the attitudes of parliamentarians towards legislative voting unity. This is investigated through the analysis of both cross-country and across-time parliamentary surveys, as well as through case-studies of individual countries. This research will allow us to understand why parliamentarians accept 'toeing the party line' most of the time, as well as the conditions under which they refuse to do so, despite the consequences. Contact: [email protected]

Fernando Casal  Bertoa defended his dissertation "A Tale of Four Systems. Party Institutionalization and its Sources: the Development of a Concept and its Empirical Application to East Central European Democracies". He also studied Law at the University of Pamplona (Spain) and Political Science at the University of Salamanca (Spain). He specialized in Eastern and Central European Studies at the Jagiellonian University (Poland). His research interests are party system formation and development, democratic consolidation and the functioning of democracy in new democracies, especially in post-communist Eastern Europe. Contact: [email protected]

Evelyne Hübscher’s research interests are in comparative politics, party politics, social policy and labor market reforms. Her Ph.D. thesis theoretically establishes and empirically examines how party governments position themselves in a two-dimensional policy space when facing economic and budgetary pressure to reform social policies. Her current research focuses on the party preferences and voting behavior of different groups in the labor market on the one hand, and impact of political and institutional constraints on welfare state reforms and their consequences for labor market inequalities on the other hand. Evelyne Hübscher is an assistant professor at the Central European University in Budapest. Contact: [email protected]

Theresa Kuhn defended her PhD thesis on 8 July 2011 and took up a Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship  at the University of Oxford in September 2011. Her dissertation addresses the impact of individual transnational networks and interactions on political support for European integration using multilevel analysis of survey data. Theresa's broader research interests revolve around political sociology, cleavages, social identity formation, cosmopolitanism and globalisation. Theresa served as the Austrian team leader for the EU profiler project. Contact: [email protected]

Nikoleta Yordanova is Assistant Professor of European Politics at the Department of Social Sciences, University of Mannheim. She is also a Principal Investigator in the project ‘Legislative Reforms and Party Competition‘ of the Collaborative Research Center “Political Economy of Reforms”  (SFB) at the University of Mannheim. Her research focuses on European legislative politics, political parties (especially in Central and Eastern Europe), political economy of reforms and regulation. Her book "Organising the The European Parliament: The Role of Committees and Their Legislative Influence" was published by ECPR Press. Contact: [email protected]



Current intern

OPPR is open for recruitment. Send an email to [email protected] if interested

Previous interns

Gabriele Caselli, from 3/10/2016 to 23/12/2016

Giulia Ceccanti and Francesca Monti, from 28/09/2015 to 23/12/2015

Chiara Cervasio, from 16/6/2014 to 16/9/2014

Giacomo Bono from 16/4/2014 to 16/7/2014

Mattia Citi from 15/4/2013 to 15/7/2013

Francesca Feo from 2/2/2013 to 2/5/2013

Leonardo Zuccaro from 2/2/2013 to 2/5/2013

Claudia Poletti from 2/5/2012 to 2/8/2012

Francesca Rinaldi from 2/4/2012 to 2/7/2012

András Varga from 2/11/2011 to 2/2/2012



Latest News
OPPR's coordinator Lorenzo Cicchi published a new book

OPPR's coordinator Lorenzo Cicchi published a new book

Is euro-voting truly supranational? National affiliation and political group membership in European Parliament
'Pathways to Power' research project:  presentation of preliminary findings

'Pathways to Power' research project: presentation of preliminary findings

15 February, 2016 - Institute for Government, London

Page last updated on 06 April 2018