According to § 98 UG (Universities Act 2002), Karin Bischof has been appointed as University Professor for European Policy and the Study of Democracy with effect of 15 October 2023. At the same time, she took over as Head of the Department for European Policy and the Study of Democracy, which is part of the Faculty of Business and Globalisation.
Political scientist Prof. Karin Bischof has gained international recognition in particular for her work at the interface between empirical democracy research and democratic theory. Her research interests concentrate on the processes of change in the concept of democracy in Europe. Bischof places them in a global context and examines them from an intersectional and gender-critical perspective. The main focus is on questions of inequality and diversity in the transformation of European democracy, on processes of (horizontal) Europeanization and on the past-political dimension of European democracy.
Transformations of democracy in Europe
As head of the Department for European Policy and the Study of Democracy, Karin Bischof focuses on the development and implementation of a research program on the transformation of European democracy based on three main pillars: the first pillar, sustainability and democracy, is about the nexus of these two concepts. This includes the question of the relationship between democracy, authoritarianism, and sustainable governance, as well as the question of what makes democracy itself sustainable. The second pillar, democratic development in Europe, is concerned with current trends in democratic change as they are reflected in discursive struggles over meaning, for example in the climate protection debate or in authoritarian-populist anti-gender mobilizations. In addition to this theory-based research, the third pillar focuses on applied democracy research, especially with a regional and local focus.
About the person
Karin Bischof studied political science at the University of Vienna, where she wrote her doctoral thesis on "EUropa metaphors in media discourse: the example of the EU as a global player. On the ideology-critical potential of metaphor analyses". Her cumulative habilitation thesis “Demos- und Wir-Konstruktionen und die Transformation der Demokratie. Intersektionale Analysen” (“Constructions of Demos and We and the Transformation of Democracy. Intersectional Analyses") is published by Nomos. Karin Bischof is a member of the International Political Science Association (IPSA), the European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR) and the Austrian Political Science Association ÖGPW, among others.
Her previous career has taken her to the University of Vienna (since 2011) as a Lecturer and later as an Associate Professor in Political Science and Gender Studies, to the University of Passau (2020/21) as a Research and Teaching Fellow and to the European Forum at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (2019/20) as an Assistant Professor. Prior to this, she was a Senior Researcher at the Institute for Conflict Research in Vienna (2002-18) and a Research Fellow at the Documentation Centre of Austrian Resistance (2012-14).