Home>CIVICA Selected 11 New Innovative Research Projects

31.10.2022

CIVICA Selected 11 New Innovative Research Projects

alt
(credits: CIVICA)

Our societies are facing major challenges: rising extremism and violence, persistent discrimination, difficulties in establishing environmental public policies, slowness of the financial sector to commit to a low-carbon economy... It is to all these questions, to which politicians are in a hurry to respond, that our researchers have decided to tackle within the framework of CIVICA Research. Its added value is its capacity to bring together diverse approaches from across the social sciences on major global and uniquely-European challenges. 

The CIVICA Research project aims at endowing CIVICA - The European University of Social Sciences - with the instruments of an ambitious and innovative research strategy in order to create a joint, long-term research environment for the alliance. It received €2m in funding from the EU programme Horizon 2020 to enable researchers to conduct joint scientific activities.

Following CIVICA's third call, eleven projects have been selected for funding totaling €350,000. Most of them bring together two or three CIVICA partners, with the biggest project about Migrants’ integration in EU countries (MERITA), involving all ten CIVICA alliance institutions. Six projects gather faculty and researchers from Sciences Po, four of which are led or co-led by Sciences Po.

Projects led by Sciences Po

European Polarisation Observatory Working Group (EPO - WG)

The study of the social and political impact of social media has become an important stream of research, not least for its relation with growing anxieties regarding political polarisation and extremism, fragmentation of internet communities into so-called bubbles, and misinformation, to name a few. Large-scale studies of socio-political dynamics on internet platforms and AI systems mediating them are becoming a driving force for evidence-based policy, shaping the future of internet regulation.

These studies hinge on conceptualisations and operationalisation of opinions: Do algorithmic recommendations propose politically-diverse content piercing filter bubbles? Do users connect only with like-minded others forming echo chambers? Does political extremism relate to misinformation? Recent advancements in network scaling methods, have shown that digital behavioural traces in social media platforms can be used to mine opinions at a massive scale better than traditional polls and surveys. 

In its first phase, the project (funded under the first call) developed new methods to better understand polarisation in Europe. Their results cover algorithmic recommendation, democratic back-sliding, new media dynamics, the emergence of illiberal attitudes and mistrust of institutions, misinformation, and polarisation and fragmentation of the digital public space. With this second phase of the project, the research team seeks to build a European Polarisation Observatory into a social media observatory infrastructure, providing political opinion data driving research in diverse areas of social sciences across CIVICA. 

Partners: Sciences Po médialab, Central European University and Bocconi University co-lead this research. 

Sciences Po principal investigators: Jean-Philippe Cointet, Associate Professor & Pedro Ramaciotti Morales, post-doc, médialab.

Local democracy and state power: Immigrant inclusion or marginalisation? (LOCALDEM)

LocalDem explores the links between politics and policing at the local level since 2000. Anti-elite right-wing populists rise to power, in part, through their efforts to link immigrants with crime in voters’ minds. Once in power, aggressive policing is one of their first policy goals. Thus, nearly all European democracies face the challenge of fighting crime without further marginalising low-income, minority, or immigrant groups. The research team will explore how a greater police presence combined with greater local accountability affects social dynamics. Specifically, the researchers will study the effects of recent expansions of municipal police departments in France. They will start by documenting the correlations between local police presence on the territory and a wide range of demographics, crime rates and political opinions. They will collect and digitise novel data on parties’ manifestos in municipal elections. This database will become publicly available at the end of the project. Text analysis from this source and election results will allow them to study the effects of the police-promising party narrowly winning or losing the election. With this design and individual level data, they will study not only how a local police force affects crime and arrests, but also migration, housing values, and educational and employment outcomes, particularly among disadvantaged members of the population. 

Principal investigator: Roberto Galbiati, Research Professor (CNRS), Department of Economics.

Stockholm School of Economics is part of this research.

Towards a common framework for evaluating EU's policy effectiveness in achieving its Green transformation goals (EVALEU)

With the Green Deal, the European Union embarked on a mission to aim for the fastest worldwide transition to a green economy with low emissions. These aims require a paradigmatic shift in the function of its economy and significant socio-economic strain and would depend on upgrading the EU’s institutional capacity to evaluate and monitor policy implementation. Overall, the EU’s effort to become the global leader in combating climate change and environmental degradation could be successful if the policy instruments deployed towards these ends are carefully calibrated to ensure a continuous progression of its Member States’ to achieve its environmental goals. To understand the extent to which the current policy targets can be achieved and what modifications would be required, we must evaluate the EU's success so far in achieving the targets set in its previously adopted environmental policies. This project elaborates the first steps for such a framework by comprehensively systematising the current knowledge of the EU’s approach and capacity for policy ex-ante and ex-post policy implementation in the field of environmental policy. 

The Centre for European Studies and Comparative Politics at Sciences Po, Central European University and National University for Political Studies and Public Administration co-lead this research. 

Sciences Po principal investigator: Matthias Thiemann, Associate professor, Centre for European Studies and Comparative Politics

Greening or greenwashing banks? Climate conscious bank stakeholders and their impact (GREENINGBANKS)

Limiting global warming over this century to a level consistent with the Paris Agreement of 2015 requires channelling trillions of dollars towards the green transition. Private banks are expected to play a major role in this process. What factors will drive banks to finance the transition at the global scale? Are banks up to the task? How can various stakeholders like depositors, shareholders, and regulators exert pressures on banks? This project addresses these questions by first examining how environmentally-minded depositors can influence banks, using detailed data from France. A second part of the project will expand on other stakeholders to discuss what factors impede or favour the transition at a global scale. 

Principal investigator: Michele Fioretti, Assistant professor, Department of Economics.

Bocconi University is part of this research.

Projects with Sciences Po's participation

Migrants’ integration in EU countries: for a selected few only? Current shifts in conceptions of integration and impact on social and ethnic inequalities in host countries (MERITA)

The idea of this project is to develop a multi-disciplinary forum about integration of  migrants in Europe, across social sciences and including representatives of all current CIVICA partners (10 institutions). A forum intends to identify grounds for contemporary conceptualisations of integration of migrants in EU countries and to problematise them. What are current logics in thinking about integration and what are the potential implications of these logics are the core research questions, in particular, regarding the possible creation of increased social and racial inequality in societies. 

This research is led by Stockholm School of Economics. 

Bocconi University, Central European University, European University Institute, Hertie School, IE University, London School of Economics and Political Science, Sciences Po Centre for Political Research (CEVIPOF) and Centre for Research on social Inequalities (CRIS), SGH Warsaw School of Economics and National University for Political Studies and Public Administration are part of this research.

Explorative cases of sustainability and climate change discourse dynamics on social media combining text and network analyses (DYSTENA)

This project seeks to contribute to the development of computational tools for the analysis of text data to help track the dynamics of discourses on social media and examine how these influence policies and norms. As media has shifted towards digital media where anyone can produce messages with wide visibility, the new forms of communication require new tools for researchers to analyse and understand their roles in the development of norms and policies. The research team will  study two independent cases, to understand (1) how diplomats use their social media presence to interact with other diplomats and the public and influence climate negotiation with their presence online, and (2) how activists individuals and organisations use their social media presence to diffuse sustainability ideas and norms which influence companies’ behaviour regarding sustainability and climate issues.

This research is led by Stockholm School of Economics. 

Bocconi University, Central European University and Sciences Po Centre for International Studies (CERI) are part of this research.

MORE INFORMATION:

alt
CIVICA Research, Co-funded by the Horizon 2020 Programme of the European Union (credits: CIVICA)

DOWNLOAD OUR BROCHURE

Sciences Po at 150

alt

Moving fluidly between past, present and future narratives, throughout 2022, Sciences Po draw on its history to look ahead to its future in a range of different formats and media.

Discover the 150 years website (FR).

31.10.2022

CIVICA Selected 11 New Innovative Research Projects

alt
(credits: CIVICA)

Our societies are facing major challenges: rising extremism and violence, persistent discrimination, difficulties in establishing environmental public policies, slowness of the financial sector to commit to a low-carbon economy... It is to all these questions, to which politicians are in a hurry to respond, that our researchers have decided to tackle within the framework of CIVICA Research. Its added value is its capacity to bring together diverse approaches from across the social sciences on major global and uniquely-European challenges. 

The CIVICA Research project aims at endowing CIVICA - The European University of Social Sciences - with the instruments of an ambitious and innovative research strategy in order to create a joint, long-term research environment for the alliance. It received €2m in funding from the EU programme Horizon 2020 to enable researchers to conduct joint scientific activities.

Following CIVICA's third call, eleven projects have been selected for funding totaling €350,000. Most of them bring together two or three CIVICA partners, with the biggest project about Migrants’ integration in EU countries (MERITA), involving all ten CIVICA alliance institutions. Six projects gather faculty and researchers from Sciences Po, four of which are led or co-led by Sciences Po.

Projects led by Sciences Po

European Polarisation Observatory Working Group (EPO - WG)

The study of the social and political impact of social media has become an important stream of research, not least for its relation with growing anxieties regarding political polarisation and extremism, fragmentation of internet communities into so-called bubbles, and misinformation, to name a few. Large-scale studies of socio-political dynamics on internet platforms and AI systems mediating them are becoming a driving force for evidence-based policy, shaping the future of internet regulation.

These studies hinge on conceptualisations and operationalisation of opinions: Do algorithmic recommendations propose politically-diverse content piercing filter bubbles? Do users connect only with like-minded others forming echo chambers? Does political extremism relate to misinformation? Recent advancements in network scaling methods, have shown that digital behavioural traces in social media platforms can be used to mine opinions at a massive scale better than traditional polls and surveys. 

In its first phase, the project (funded under the first call) developed new methods to better understand polarisation in Europe. Their results cover algorithmic recommendation, democratic back-sliding, new media dynamics, the emergence of illiberal attitudes and mistrust of institutions, misinformation, and polarisation and fragmentation of the digital public space. With this second phase of the project, the research team seeks to build a European Polarisation Observatory into a social media observatory infrastructure, providing political opinion data driving research in diverse areas of social sciences across CIVICA. 

Partners: Sciences Po médialab, Central European University and Bocconi University co-lead this research. 

Sciences Po principal investigators: Jean-Philippe Cointet, Associate Professor & Pedro Ramaciotti Morales, post-doc, médialab.

Local democracy and state power: Immigrant inclusion or marginalisation? (LOCALDEM)

LocalDem explores the links between politics and policing at the local level since 2000. Anti-elite right-wing populists rise to power, in part, through their efforts to link immigrants with crime in voters’ minds. Once in power, aggressive policing is one of their first policy goals. Thus, nearly all European democracies face the challenge of fighting crime without further marginalising low-income, minority, or immigrant groups. The research team will explore how a greater police presence combined with greater local accountability affects social dynamics. Specifically, the researchers will study the effects of recent expansions of municipal police departments in France. They will start by documenting the correlations between local police presence on the territory and a wide range of demographics, crime rates and political opinions. They will collect and digitise novel data on parties’ manifestos in municipal elections. This database will become publicly available at the end of the project. Text analysis from this source and election results will allow them to study the effects of the police-promising party narrowly winning or losing the election. With this design and individual level data, they will study not only how a local police force affects crime and arrests, but also migration, housing values, and educational and employment outcomes, particularly among disadvantaged members of the population. 

Principal investigator: Roberto Galbiati, Research Professor (CNRS), Department of Economics.

Stockholm School of Economics is part of this research.

Towards a common framework for evaluating EU's policy effectiveness in achieving its Green transformation goals (EVALEU)

With the Green Deal, the European Union embarked on a mission to aim for the fastest worldwide transition to a green economy with low emissions. These aims require a paradigmatic shift in the function of its economy and significant socio-economic strain and would depend on upgrading the EU’s institutional capacity to evaluate and monitor policy implementation. Overall, the EU’s effort to become the global leader in combating climate change and environmental degradation could be successful if the policy instruments deployed towards these ends are carefully calibrated to ensure a continuous progression of its Member States’ to achieve its environmental goals. To understand the extent to which the current policy targets can be achieved and what modifications would be required, we must evaluate the EU's success so far in achieving the targets set in its previously adopted environmental policies. This project elaborates the first steps for such a framework by comprehensively systematising the current knowledge of the EU’s approach and capacity for policy ex-ante and ex-post policy implementation in the field of environmental policy. 

The Centre for European Studies and Comparative Politics at Sciences Po, Central European University and National University for Political Studies and Public Administration co-lead this research. 

Sciences Po principal investigator: Matthias Thiemann, Associate professor, Centre for European Studies and Comparative Politics

Greening or greenwashing banks? Climate conscious bank stakeholders and their impact (GREENINGBANKS)

Limiting global warming over this century to a level consistent with the Paris Agreement of 2015 requires channelling trillions of dollars towards the green transition. Private banks are expected to play a major role in this process. What factors will drive banks to finance the transition at the global scale? Are banks up to the task? How can various stakeholders like depositors, shareholders, and regulators exert pressures on banks? This project addresses these questions by first examining how environmentally-minded depositors can influence banks, using detailed data from France. A second part of the project will expand on other stakeholders to discuss what factors impede or favour the transition at a global scale. 

Principal investigator: Michele Fioretti, Assistant professor, Department of Economics.

Bocconi University is part of this research.

Projects with Sciences Po's participation

Migrants’ integration in EU countries: for a selected few only? Current shifts in conceptions of integration and impact on social and ethnic inequalities in host countries (MERITA)

The idea of this project is to develop a multi-disciplinary forum about integration of  migrants in Europe, across social sciences and including representatives of all current CIVICA partners (10 institutions). A forum intends to identify grounds for contemporary conceptualisations of integration of migrants in EU countries and to problematise them. What are current logics in thinking about integration and what are the potential implications of these logics are the core research questions, in particular, regarding the possible creation of increased social and racial inequality in societies. 

This research is led by Stockholm School of Economics. 

Bocconi University, Central European University, European University Institute, Hertie School, IE University, London School of Economics and Political Science, Sciences Po Centre for Political Research (CEVIPOF) and Centre for Research on social Inequalities (CRIS), SGH Warsaw School of Economics and National University for Political Studies and Public Administration are part of this research.

Explorative cases of sustainability and climate change discourse dynamics on social media combining text and network analyses (DYSTENA)

This project seeks to contribute to the development of computational tools for the analysis of text data to help track the dynamics of discourses on social media and examine how these influence policies and norms. As media has shifted towards digital media where anyone can produce messages with wide visibility, the new forms of communication require new tools for researchers to analyse and understand their roles in the development of norms and policies. The research team will  study two independent cases, to understand (1) how diplomats use their social media presence to interact with other diplomats and the public and influence climate negotiation with their presence online, and (2) how activists individuals and organisations use their social media presence to diffuse sustainability ideas and norms which influence companies’ behaviour regarding sustainability and climate issues.

This research is led by Stockholm School of Economics. 

Bocconi University, Central European University and Sciences Po Centre for International Studies (CERI) are part of this research.

MORE INFORMATION:

alt
CIVICA Research, Co-funded by the Horizon 2020 Programme of the European Union (credits: CIVICA)

DOWNLOAD OUR BROCHURE

Sciences Po at 150

alt

Moving fluidly between past, present and future narratives, throughout 2022, Sciences Po draw on its history to look ahead to its future in a range of different formats and media.

Discover the 150 years website (FR).