International Studies

The “International Studies” section of the Austrian Political Science Association seeks to facilitate exchange and collaboration among scholars working in diverse (sub-)disciplines such as International Relations Theory, Security Studies, International Political Economy, Foreign Policy Analysis, and Areas Studies. The members of the section are committed to theoretical and methodological pluralism as well as international standards of scholarship. In addition, the section and its members seek to enhance the political and societal relevance of academic research on international relations.


Dr. Martin SENN
Associate Professor in International Relations Department of Political Science
University of Innsbruck
M: martin.senn[at]
Ph: +43 (0)512 507 70124

Professor in Political Science and International Relations
Vienna School of International Relations
M: markus.kornprobst[at]
Ph: +43 (0)1505 7272 157

Politics and Administration

In this Special Interest Group (SIG), we look at the relationship between politics and administration from a political science perspective. Our current areas of interest include reflecting on the theory and practice of administrative reform(s); administration, legislation, and citizen participation; politicization of the administration; Europeanization and internationalization in administration; knowledge, expertise, advice and learning from administration and politics. The discourse between theory and practice is particularly important to us, which is reflected not only in the way in which the individual topics are dealt with but also in the diverse disciplinary backgrounds and institutional anchoring of our members, who are based at both academic and non-academic institutions including universities of applied sciences, ministries, and external administrative units.


Department Innovation Systems and Policy
AIT – Austrian Institute of Technology
M: peter.biegelbauer[at]

Dr. Christoph KONRATH
Head of the Department of Parliamentary Research Support, Legal, Legislative and Scientific Service
M: christoph.konrath[at]

Teaching and Research Public Management, FH Campus Wien
M: michal.sedlacko[at]


The European Studies Special Interest Group (SIG) is coordinated by Gerda Falkner at the Centre for European Integration Research of the Department of Political Science at the University of Vienna. The SIG provides a platform for specialized discourse among political science experts on topics such as European integration (in the broader sense). Research presentations may include relevant work by members or related parties, but also by international guests. There is a separate mailing list where events are announced (sometimes exclusively!). You can subscribe to the mailing list here.


Prof. Gerda Falkner
Centre for European Integration Research (EIF)
University of Vienna
M: eif[at]

Gender & Politics

Mission Statement: The Special Interest Group (SIG) “Gender & Politics” aims to promote innovative, interdisciplinary, and transdisciplinary science and research collaborations in the field of gender and politics in Austria and beyond. The SIG is committed to methodological pluralism, ethics of inclusion and the highest scientific standards. Early career researchers (ECRs) are just as welcome as established scholars who deal with issues of gender and politics. These questions range from examining the unequal participation and representation of women in politics and differences in political attitudes, interests, and knowledge, to evaluating the gender impact of COVID-19 policies on women and girls. In doing so, the SIG explicitly promotes intersectional approaches.

Objective: The primary objective of the SIG is to promote interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary research collaborations in Austria that enable cutting-edge research in the field of gender and politics. Ultimately, the SIG seeks to establish a national network of researchers in the field of gender and politics and to build on this network internationally. A core focus is the promotion of early career researchers and facilitating networking opportunities for ECRs and students across different universities.

Mission Statement: The SIG “Gender & Politics” aims to connect and promote researchers from various disciplines who are interested in researching complex and interconnected dimensions of gender and politics and to engage with an open science framework.
Research Interests: Democracy, diversity, and equality; causes and consequences of unequal political participation and representation; effects of gender gaps or inequalities in politics on other areas of life (e.g., labour market, family, health); psycho-emotional foundations of/prerequisites for equality and diversity; political parties and social movements as shapers, mediators and challengers of women’s interests; factors influencing the formation of political and gender-specific attitudes.


Professor for Politics & Gender, Diversity & Equality
University of Salzburg
M: zoe.lefkofridi[at]

Visual Politics

The central theme of the Special Interest Group (SIG) is the visual dimension of politics and the political process. Visuality can be seen as an important resource for political action. The perception of images follows its own associative logic. Images can therefore also make something visible that cannot be conveyed linguistically. Against this background, visual politics sees visual phenomena as an object of research. Images are seen as sources and objects of analysis, and not just as illustrations of a text. The focus of image-scientific analyses is on image motifs, image content, their symbolic meanings, as well as production and reception contexts. Visual politics deals with the political contextualization of images, the production of images for political purposes, image-strategic action, questions of public visibility or invisibility and their reference contexts with political power constellations. The SIG “Visual Politics” aims to facilitate a more intensive examination of visual phenomena within the framework of political science research designs and the promotion of visual competence in political science, which enables an innovative approach to political science issues. The SIG also aims to network political science students (especially MA students and predocs) from various universities who work in the field of visual politics.
RESEARCH INTERESTS: Political contextualization and politicization of images, visual production, and representation of politics; strategic image action, visual political communication, such as visual election campaign communication, mediation of politics via traditional visual media and social media; image constructions of political actors, visual methods of political science, visual history of ideas. Visual politics is a core research focus at the Department of Political Science at the University of Vienna. Examples of ongoing research projects funded by third parties encompass “The Austrian Presidential Elections 2016: A Case Study in Visual Political Storytelling” (funded by the Jubilee Fund of the Austrian National Bank, and “Memorial Year 2018: The Past in the Focus of Political and Public Communication” (funded by the BKA and the National Fund of the Republic of Austria). We offer numerous courses on visual politics for BA, MA, and PhD level students. Furthermore, numerous master’s theses have already been successfully submitted and there are opportunities to supervise further master’s theses and dissertations. The SIG is closely linked to the interdisciplinary research group Visual Studies ( at the Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Vienna.


PDin Mag.a Karin LIEBHART
M: karin.liebhart[at]

M: petra.bernhardt[at]

Didactic of Politics

Civic education promotes the political maturity of citizens. Furthermore, the examination of political didactics makes it possible to further develop political didactic and social science research and teaching, thus promoting the communication of subject-specific findings accordingly. In this context, the Special Interest Group (SIG) seeks to further develop the professional discourse as well as related teaching and learning opportunities. Lecturers within political science should be given the opportunity to exchange challenges within teaching and to jointly develop didactic strategies and procedures. Furthermore, students should be provided with the space to formulate their needs when learning political and social science topics. Finally, political didactics as a scientific discipline in Austria is to be strengthened, further developed, and made visible. The SIG also engages in a range of events, such as lectures, discussion groups and workshops, where there is a particular emphasis on the inclusion and promotion of early career researchers. In addition, the SIG strives to foster an exchange with other interested groups and encourages participation at specialist conferences.

Centre for Teacher Education – Didactics of civic and citizenship education
University of Vienna
M: lara.kierot[at]

Johanna TAUFNER, BA ,MA, MSc
Centre for Teacher Education – Didactics of civic and citizenship education
University of Vienna
M: johanna.taufner[at]

Religion and Politics

The aim of the Special Interest Group (SIG) is to provide a networking platform for academics researching the relationship between religion and politics. This is intended to promote and facilitate cooperation in the subject area. In addition, the SIG aims to contribute to increasing the visibility of Austrian research on this topic. For early career researchers, it offers a starting point to get to know political science research on religious topics. Furthermore, the SIG strives to provide a discussion platform for researchers and practitioners.

Initiatives and activities:

  • Mailing list with announcements (conferences, publications, new projects and positions of members, job advertisements, scholarships, etc.)
  • Discussion platform: “Religion and Politics in Research and Practice”
  • Organization of panels and symposiums at conferences
  • Networking meetings in the context of the AuPSA conferences
CO-CHAIRS MMag.a Astrid Mattes
Religion and Transformation in Contemporary Society
University of Vienna
M: astrid.mattes[at]

Assoz. Prof. Fabio Wolkenstein, Ph.D.
Department of Political Science
University of Vienna

Political Leadership


Bettina Pepek
M: pepek[at]

Early Career Group

The aim of the Early Career Group (ECG) is to promote networking and collaboration among early career researchers including predocs and postdocs in the field of political science. The primary goal of the ECG is to facilitate knowledge exchange and to provide a networking platform for political science early career researchers in Austria. To achieve this goal, an ECG representation should be ideally selected from every location. Each ECG representative should host one or two meetings at each location annually. The outcomes and progress of these local meetings should then be reported at joint events (e.g., workshops, and conferences), which also consider encouraging joint publications. All PhD students and postdocs working in political science fields (up to 5 years after their PhD) are encouraged to join the ECG.

CHAIR Carmen Walenta-Bergmann, MA
Institute of Politics and Social Policy
Johannes Kepler University Linz
M: carmen.walenta-bergmann[at]