PhD Candidate in comparative politics and representation

PhD Candidate in comparative politics and representation

Job Application
  • Actualité Sciences PoActualité Sciences Po

PhD Candidate in comparative politics and representation (ANR-DFG programme UNEQUALMAND)

The Center for European Studies and Comparative Politics (CEE) at Sciences Po invites applications for a PhD fellowship on political inequalities in mandate representation, as part of the ANR-DFG project "Unequal mandate responsiveness? How electoral promises and their realizations target groups in France and Germany" (UNEQUALMAND).

The position is announced for a period of 3 years. There are no teaching obligations. Yet, a daily involvement in the project’s and research center’s activities is expected. The starting date for the fellowship is 1 September 2022.

Environment: The Center for European Studies and Comparative Politics

The CEE is a joint research unit of CNRS (UMR8239) and Sciences Po. It was founded in 2005 to pursue three main missions: to develop research on European questions and comparative politics at Sciences Po; to facilitate Sciences Po’s insertion in European research networks; to foster the European debate on the future of Europe. The quality of the CEE was acknowledged by the CNRS, granting a full integration of the CEE.

It is currently bringing together 34 full-time researchers and professors, 26 PhD students, and a large number of research associates and guest researchers. They form a strong team through their shared approach to research and participatory governance. The Centre’s researchers are affiliated with four departments (political science, sociology, law and history), with the School of Research as well as with the Paris School for International Affairs (PSIA), Urban School and School of Public Affairs.

Most of the research projects carried out at the CEE adopt an international and/or comparative approach, and the results are published in international peer-reviewed journals. About 90 scientific events take place every year, gathering scholars, media and civil society. The CEE contributes to the structuration of the European Research Space in social and political sciences, especially through the design and management of various programs and partnerships supported by EU institutions like the European Research Council ( ).

With international research as its main purpose, the CEE sets major emphasis on PhD students’ training and supervision.

The PhD will benefit from all the facilities at Sciences Po, including a workplace, an extended access to the library and the electronic resources and a scientific support within the research center. This includes opportunities to develop scientific exchange as part of the teams working on the center’s various key themes, in particular on “strains on democratic representation” and “the state as producer of public policies”.


Led by Isabelle Guinaudeau, Elisa Deiss-Helbig and Theres Matthiess, UNEQUALMAND examines political (in-)equality in France and Germany through the lens of group representation, with a focus on mandates and their realization in the form of policies. The project looks at the supply as well as the demand-side of political competition. How do pledges and fulfilled policy appeal to groups with different characteristics? How and under what conditions do citizens respond to group targeting in electoral manifestos (prospective) and pledge fulfillment (retrospective)? These questions will be addressed using an innovative research design that combines data on electoral promises, surveys, experimental designs, and case-studies. The project is based at Sciences Po, the University of Trier, and University of Stuttgart.

Job description

The tasks include:

• Own scientific qualification (PhD)

• Involvement in collecting the data relevant to own PhD research

• Case studies on group-targeting in electoral pledges and effective policy

• Supporting the organization of team meetings and workshops

• Assistance with project reports and publications

Supervision and PhD programme

• The PhD will be co-supervised by Isabelle Guinaudeau and Emiliano Grossman at Sciences Po, CEE, with additional opportunities to exchange with the UNEQUALMAND international research team.

• The successful candidate will be enrolled in the PhD programme of Sciences Po (School of Research) and the work will result in a doctorate in political science.

Requirements are:

• a master's degree in political science or a related discipline,

• excellent academic track record

• interest in research on representation, party competition, voting, and/or political inequality,

• ability to work both in a team and independently

• excellent French and English language skills

Desirable, but not required:

• Knowledge of German

• Knowledge of social science methods, text analysis, statistical software (e.g. R, Stata) and/or mixed methods

• Knowledge of LaTeX

• Knowledge of Git

We offer

In addition to the benefits of taking a team PhD as part of UNEQUALMAND, Sciences Po offers:

• Competitive salary

• Academically stimulating working environment

• Vibrant, integrated and international research community

Application procedure

Applications must be submitted by 18 May 2022:

Online Admission: The application must be submitted exclusively online, according to the Admissions calendar.

The application must include the following documents:

• Copy of ID

• Letter of motivation

• Outline of ideas for the doctoral project (2,000-3,000 words) and a summary

• Copy of BA and MA (if already available) degree diplomas

• CV with full summary of education, practice, academic and non-academic work experience, language proficiency, positions of trust, and other qualifying/extra-curricular activities. The period of enrolment (admission-completion) in the Master’s study programme must be specified

• If applicable: up to two academic publications (i.e. MA thesis or published articles)

• Optional: up to two references

As the application is completed, please send an email to Linda Amrani, General Secretary of the CEE ( ) to confirm that you have applied for the UNEQUALMAND PhD position.

Equally well qualified disabled persons will be given priority. Women and people with an immigration background are expressly invited to apply.

If you have any questions, please send an e-mail to Isabelle Guinaudeau (

Job interviews are planned for 31 May, 2022.

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