29/10/2012: Electoral Law to be reformed

German electoral law to be reformed

 A reform of the German electoral law in favor of the second vote may have unintended consequences.Professor Thomas König, Spokesperson to the SFB 884, comments on the reform plans:



11/10/2012: Professor Janeba appointed as member of scientific advisory board

Professor Eckhard, Janeba, vice-spokesperson to the SFB 884, has been appointed as vice-chair of the scientific advisory board to the German Federal Ministry of Economy and Technology (http://www.bmwi.de/BMWi/Navigation/Ministerium/beiraete.html).


 Initially founded by distinguished economists Franz Böhm, Walter Eucken, Alfred Müller-Armack, Oswald v. Nell-Breuning, Erich Preiser und Karl Schiller and others, the scientific advisory board at the Ministry has been established as one of the most pronounced channels of scientific policy advice. The scientific advisory board recommends outstanding scientists for membership to the Federal minister who in turn appoints these to the board. Professor Janeba has been elected as vice-spokesperson for the next two years.


28/08/2012: Political Scientists at the University of Mannheim receive APSA Gosnell Prize

Political Scientists at the University of Mannheim receive APSA Gosnell Prize

Mannheim, 31. Juli 2012
Stephan Solomon

The Political Methodology section of the American Political Science Association (APSA) has awarded this year's Gosnell Prize for Excellence in Political Methodology to three political scientists from the University of Mannheim. Thomas Gschwend, James Lo and Sven-Oliver Proksch (Ph.D.) will receive the prize for their work on "A Common Left-Right Scale for Voters and Parties in Europe". This is the first time in the history of the Gosnell Prize that a team of researchers outside the United States has received the award. Previous winners include renowned methodologists such as Gary King, Andrew Martin, Kevin Quinn, and Curtis Signorino. The award will be officially presented at the annual conference of the American Political Science Association in New Orleans in September.

The authors conducted their award-winning research at the Research Center "The Political Economy of Reforms" at the University of Mannheim. Their paper integrates two rescaling techniques to place national parties, voters, and European political groups across Europe in the same left-right space using European Election Studies survey data. It addresses individual perception biases within countries and uses parties’ membership in European Parliament political groups as an anchor across countries. The common space scores not only provide party positions that can be used in comparative cross-national research, but also produce voter-level data that can be used to test theories of voting and representation in cross-national studies.

The American Political Science Association, founded in 1903, is the world's leading professional organization for political science research with over 15,000 members in more than 80 countries. The APSA publishes the world's most prestigious political science journal, the American Political Science Review. The journal of the Political Methodology section of APSA “Political Analysis” is among the most cited journals of the discipline (2011 Journal Citation Reports).

About the SFB 884

The SFB 884 “Political Economy of Reforms” is located at the University of Mannheim. It is funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) for the period 2010-2013 with the opportunity for extension to 2021. The center’s researchers come from disciplines as diverse as economics, political science, sociology, and statistics. To improve our understanding of the various aspects of reform making, including the competing interests involved, the contexts and the political process, the Collaborative Research Center (SFB) will provide new scientific insights into the success and failure of reform-making on the basis of solid empirical evidence.