University of Siegen

USIEGEN 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.

In TransSOL, 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. Its members participate in various international consortia, such as bEUcitizen and Livewhat.

We invite you to have a look at the German TransSOL website.

Team members

Christian Lahusen is the principal investigator of the German team and coordinator of TransSOL. 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. 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),  LIVEWHAT (EU FP7) and is currently part of EURYKA (EU 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 info, please visit his staff page.

Ulrike Zschache is a post-doctoral research fellow in the German team and co-applicant of the TransSOL project. She holds a dual PhD in European and Global Studies from Lancaster and Siegen University and studied sociology, cultural and political sciences and journalism at the Universities of Leipzig and Rome (La Sapienza). Her research interests lie in the area of European integration, European public spheres, transnational solidarity and the sociology of European societies. Ulrike is particularly interested in public discourses on European policy issues and the diffusion and appropriation of European ideas. She has published various books, book chapters and articles.


For up-to-date info, please visit her staff page.

Johannes Kiess is a research fellow of the German team. 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 his staff page .

Olga Eisele is a post-doctoral research fellow in the German team of TransSOL. She studied Scandinavian and European Studies at Humboldt-University, Berlin, and the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt/Oder and defended her PhD thesis in political science at the University of Vienna in May 2017. Before joining the Siegen Team, she was a researcher at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Vienna where she worked in the PACE project funded by the Austrian Science Fund, which concentrated on the communication function of national parliaments in the European Union. Her research focuses on European integration and political communication with a special focus on legitimation processes of political institutions and the influence of media contents on public opinion. She has attended numerous international conferences and published in the Journal of European Integration and Comparative European Politics.

For up-to-date information, please visit her staff page.