SCEUS Doctoral College: PhD Topics

Since 2008 doctoral students are employed by the University of Salzburg to do their research on the “Boundaries of European Integration” at the Salzburg Centre of European Union Studies.


PhD Topics 2023-2026


Lorane Visart – EP parties and the Geopoliticization of trade: adding fuel to the Commission’s fire?


Peter Pfeifenberger – Narratives in the European Union and Their Impact on Decision-Making – A Text Mining Approach 


Tehseen Jäger – Informal employment and patterns of precariousness among third-country nationals in EU Member States


Gaia Chiarini – National Deposit Guarantee Schemes as compensation for the European Deposit Insurance Scheme


PhD Topics 2020-2023


Sarah Deisl – Effect of the Member States’ Rule of Law crisis on the division of competences among EU organs

Sarah Deisl’s dissertation is devoted to the current threat to the Rule of Law in the European Union, with a particular focus on the changing balance of power within the European Institutions. Finally it will be clarified how this development of inter-institutional relations in turn affects the future development of the Rule of Law.


Mariana Mykyliuk – Quo vadis, Europe? Border controls within the Schengen area

In her dissertation at SCEUS, Mariana Mykyliuk deals with border controls within the Schengen area and their impact on the free movement of persons, in particular in times of crisis. The analysis focuses from one side on the legality of the ‘temporarily’ reintroduced and ‘permanently’ prolonged border controls under current EU law as well as from another side on perspectives for lex ferenda in this law filed.


Anna Stelzer – Heterogeneous effects of monetary policy in the euro area

In her dissertation at SCEUS, Anna Stelzer deals with the empirical effects of monetary policy on the distribution of income and wealth in the euro zone. The analysis focuses on the joint distribution of income and wealth, the spillover effects of monetary policy across national borders, and the effects of different instruments of European monetary policy.


Nico Petz – Modelling Non-linear Macroeconomic Dynamics Using Gaussian Processes

In his doctoral thesis Nico Petz explores the application of machine learning methodologies in the econometric time series analysis with a focus on macroeconometric models. Specifically, efficient statistical models are developed, which are capable of accounting for non-linearities in macroeconomic data. These models are then used to further investigate the effects of monetary policy in the eurozone.


Léo Gotarda – The Mainstreaming of Climate Change into all EU Policies

In his dissertation at SCEUS, Léo Gotarda deals with the manner in which sustainable and climate requirements are mainstreamed into some sectoral policies of the EU. The analysis focuses on the scope and boundaries of this phenomenon at the juncture of the various objectives of the EU.


Karin Klieber – Macroeconomic Forecasting in the Post Covid Era

Karin Klieber’s dissertation is dealing with macroeconomic forecasting in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. By developing complex Bayesian time series models, the aim of increasing the forecasting performance of commonly used methods is pursued. This involves dealing with large datasets and applying highly-nonlinear techniques such as machine learning algorithms. The enhancement of existing models is of great importance in order to reliably predict key macroeconomic variables and to form a strong basis for monetary policy decisions.


Klaudia Koxha – Populism and European Integration in Western Balkans

Western Balkan countries have long aspired to join the European Union. On the other hand, the European Union has a particular interest in the Balkan region in the frame of the enlargement strategy. Yet, the process of European integration appears to be a very difficult one to push forward, regardless of the efforts made by both sides. In this research, Klaudia Koxha explores an explanatory variable of the prolonged integration process, which has not been taken into consideration yet, namely populism. In this attempt, her research contributes to fill the gap in the literature on populism in the Western Balkans and offers a new perspective in understanding compliance of the Western Balkan countries with EU recommendations.


Ermela Gianna – The European Parliament in times of Covid-19: Fast Track Democracy?

In her dissertation, Ermela Gianna examines the role of the European Parliament (EP) in the MFF 2021-2027, NGEU and Rule of Law Mechanism negotiations. With the use of process tracing methods, Ermela Gianna aims to identify and analyse the EP‘s negotiating strategies and informal channels of influence, and thus, to contribute to the literature on the empowerment of the EP.


Birgit Mitter – Veins of European Cultural Policy: Awarding, Effects and Sustainability of European Cultural Project Funding

In her dissertation, Birgit Mitter comprehensively examines EU project funding in the highly diverse cultural sector on institutional level, country level and individual level. The dissertation aims at a novel linkage of literature on deepening integration in a soft policy area through projects conducted by private actors in connection with identity issues. Apart from that, existing research still lacks an overarching perspective across time, countries and cultural sectors as this field has been primarily dominanted by qualitative case studies until now. It is a core task of the thesis to fill this gap by applying various quantitative methodological approaches. 

PhD Topics 2017-2020


Carina Kobler – Mobile (24-Hour Care) Workers in the European Union: Different Labor Regimes and their (Social) Implications in Practice


Thomas Lehner – Governments, Parties, and the Public – The Multiple Layers of Conflict During the Euro Crisis


Milena Kern – Opportunities and risks of free movement of services in the EU


Christian Kleinertz – Essays on the Labour Market Effects of Migration


Isabel Staudinger –  The Legal Nature of Financial Assistance Conditionality


Sandra Hummelbrunner – The Consistency of European External Action – A Legal-Institutional Perspective

PhD Topics 2014-2017


Anita Heindlmaier – Deep Europeanization? Free movement of persons and cross-border access to social benefits within the European Union


James Wilhelm – Political Parties, European Integration Attitudes and Vote


Dominika Majorowski – The European Stability Mechanism- A crisis resolution mechanism


Francesco Galletti – Varieties of Capitalism and the EMU crisis: assessing the domestic adjustment variation


Markus Tiefenbacher – Umverteilungseffekte von fiskalpolitischen Maßnahmen innerhalb des Euroraumes


Hendrik Jungmann – Company Taxation in Europe: Evidence from Microdata

PhD Topics 2011-2014


Laura Andreea Baroni – Information Counts: Interest Group Success in the European Parliament


Cal le Gall – Explaining Patterns of Politicising Europe in Party- Competition: Salience and Polarisation


Iryna Kristensen – Public-Private Partnership and Regional Innovation Policy Conceptual Considerations and Empirical Application


Jörg Paetzold – Essays on the Economics of Labour Market Policies and Taxation in Europe. Empirical Analyses on Selected Topics


Lucia Schulten – „Einer für alle, oder alle für den Markt“. Die rechtliche Dimension von „Solidarität“ im Unionsrecht.


Erwin Stolz – Social inequality in formal long-term care utilisation in old age: A comparative analysis of 15 European countries

PHD Topics 2008 – 2011


Claudia Arisi – The Political Organisation of Business and Welfare State Restructuring: How Associational Factors Shape Employers’ Cooperation for Social Policy Development


Moritz Buschmann – Technology Transformation Towards Renewable Energies and its Impacts on European Economies and Societies


Simone Motyka-Fida – Gewährleistung der Versorgungssicherheit im liberalisierten Elektrizitätsmarkt


Christina Ortner – Wie junge Erwachsene die EU sehen und was Medien dazu beitragen


Alena Ottichová – Grenzüberschreitende Inanspruchnahme medizinischer Leistungen und Beschränkungen der Patientenmobilität: Deutschland, Österreich und die Tschechische Republik


Ilze Ruse – Bargaining Power of Institutional Coalitions in EU Council Negotiations


Helene Schönheinz – The Janus-faced European Employment Strategy (EES). The Interplay Between the National and the European Level Regarding the EES in Austria and the UK


Alexander Seymer – Values as Explanatory Variables for Attitudes towards Welfare States. A Cross-national Comparison among four Member States