Alumni Fellow

Dr Holger Straßheim

Alumni Fellows

Käte Hamburger Kolleg / Centre for Global Cooperation Research
Schifferstraße 44
47059 Duisburg

Tel: +49 (0)203 29861-136
Fax: +49 (0)203 379-5276
E-mail: strassheim@spam


Dr. Holger Straßheim joined Käte Hamburger Kolleg / Centre for Global Cooperation Research as a Fellow. He was conducting his research in Research Unit 4 'Paradoxes and Perspectives of Democratization' from April 2016 to September 2016.

Research Project at the Centre

Globalizing Expertise: The Case of Behavioural Governance

My project combines insights from comparative policy analysis, STS and global governance research. Its goal is twofold: Conceptually, I will develop the building blocks for a constitutive theory on expertise and authority, its emergence, cultural embeddedness and erosion in world society. Empirically, I am focusing on the yet unexplained rise of behavioural expertise and governance over the past ten years, exploring its inter- and transnational diffusion, its variation across both national contexts as well as policy areas and its consequences for the relations between science, society and the state. I argue that this case is crucial for understanding the future of expertise and democracy under the conditions of the post-national constellation.

Research Interests

  • Public Policy & Governance
  • Comparative Policy Analysis (Employment Policy, Food Safety, Consumer Policy, Energy Policy)
  • Science, Expertise and Democracy
  • Welfare State Research
  • Organizations and Networks
  • Economic Discourses and Social Regulation
  • Time and Public Policy

Current Projects

  • NEXUS: Challenges at the Interface Between Climate Policy, Energy Policy, Consumer Policy and Mobility (principal investigator, funded by the Mercator Foundation, 2016–19)
  • Using Expertise and Evidence in Consumer Policy and Energy Policy (principal investigator, funded by the Mercator Foundation, 2015–16)
  • Assessing Big Data (ABIDA): Big data as a Subject and Ressource of Regulation (member of the Working Group Political Science, funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, 2015–19)
  • Research Handbook 'Behavioural Change and Public Policy' (edited book, Edward Elgar, to be published in 2017)
  • Expertise and Authority. Towards a Political Epistemology (book project, to be published in 2017)


Since 01/2014 WZB Berlin Social Science Center, Berlin
Science Policy Study Group
Visiting Fellow
Since 01/2010 Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Department of Social Sciences
Assistant Professor
02/2014-06/2014 Harvard University, USA
Kennedy School of Government
Visiting Research Fellow
10/2013-04/2014 University of Bremen, Germany
Centre for Social Policy Research
Visiting Professor "Theory of the Welfare State"; "Comparative Social Policy"
10/2012-09/2013 Technische Universität Darmstadt, Germany
Institute of Political Science
Visiting Professor "Public Policy and Governance"
01/2009-12/2010 Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Virtual Knowledge Studio (today: e-humanities Group)
Visiting Fellow
04/2009-12/2009 Technische Universität Darmstadt, Germany
Institute of Political Science
Assistant Professor
01/1999-03/2009 WZB Berlin Social Science Center, Berlin
Deps. Technology-Work-Environment; Innovation and Organization; Cultural Sources of Newness
Research Fellow
06/1996-12/1998 WZB Berlin Social Science Center, Berlin
Deps. Institutions and Social Change; Political Economy of Industrial Change
Research Assistant
04/1991-06/1997 Philips-Universität Marburg and Freie Universität Berlin, Germany
Institute of Political Science

Selected Publications

Straßheim, H. and Korinek, R-L. (2016): Cultivating 'Nudge': Knowing Behavioural Governance, in: R. Freeman and J.-P. Voss (eds.): Knowing Governance, Palgrave Studies in Science, Knowledge and Policy, Houndmills et al.: Palgrave, 107–26.

Straßheim, H. and Ulbricht, T. (eds.) (2015): Die Zeit der Politik. Demokratisches Regieren in einer beschleunigten Welt, Leviathan Sonderband 30, Baden-Baden: Nomos.

Straßheim, H., Jung, A., and Korinek, R-L. (2015): Reframing Expertise: The Rise of Behavioural Insights and Interventions in Public Policy, in: A. Berthoin Antal, M. Hutter, and D. Stark (eds.): Moments of Valuation. Exploring Sites of Dissonance, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 249–68.

Straßheim, H. (2015): Politics and Policy Expertise: Towards a Political Epistemology, in: F. Fischer, D. Torgerson, A. Durnová, and M. Orsini (eds.): Handbook of Critical Policy Studies, Cheltenham/Northampton: Edward Elgar, 319–40.

Straßheim, H. and Korinek, R-L. (2015): Behavioural Governance in Europe, in: R. Doubleday and J. Wilsdon (eds.): Future Directions for Scientific Advice in Europe, London: University of Cambridge/University of Sussex et al., 153–60.

Straßheim, H. and Kettunen, P. (2014): When does Evidence-Based Policy Turn into Policy-Based Evidence? Configurations, Contexts and Mechanisms, in: Evidence & Policy 10 (2): 259–77.

Jung, A., Korinek, R-L., and Straßheim, H. (2014): Embedded Expertise: A Conceptual Framework for Reconstructing Knowledge Orders, Their Transformation and Local Specificities, in: Innovation: The European Journal of Social Sciences 27 (4): 398–419.

Straßheim, H. (2013): Collaborative Governance: Mehrebenendynamiken und Mechanismen des Wandels, in: Der moderne Staat 6 (2): 345–60.

Straßheim, H. (2013): Politische Expertise im Wandel: Zur diskursiven und institutionellen Einbettung epistemischer Autorität, in: S. Kropp and S. Kuhlmann (eds.): Der moderne Staat, Sonderheft 1 "Wissen und Expertise in Politik und Verwaltung", 65–87.

Straßheim, H. (2012): Wissensordnungen. Theoretische Grundlagen und analytische Potentiale eines Grenzbegriffs, in: J. Hofmann and A. Busch (eds.): Politische Vierteljahresschrift, Sonderheft 46, 48–84.

Straßheim, H. (2011): Netzwerkpolitik. Governance und Wissen im administrativen Austausch, in: D. Braun et al. (eds.): Band 6 der Reihe Modernes Regieren. Schriften zu einer neuen Regierungslehre, Baden–Baden: Nomos.

Teaching Responsibilities

  • Political Sociology and Social Policy
  • Public Policy Analysis
  • Comparative Welfare State Research
  • Governance and Regulation in Multi-level Systems
  • Political and Sociological Theory
  • Science-Policy Studies

Expertise and Consulting Work

  • Regularly involved as expert on science, public policy and society (e.g. Mercator Foundation, Centre for Science and Policy Cambridge, Hans-Böckler-Foundation, Bertelsmann Foundation)
  • Member of the International Network for Government Science Advice (INGSA)
  • Reviewer: Critical Policy Studies, Environmental Policy, European Policy Analysis, Evidence & Policy, Innovation, Internet Policy Review, Leviathan, Nature and Culture, Policy Studies, Policy Science, Science and Public Policy, Sustainable Development, World Review of European Policy Analysis, WIREs Climate Change

Seminars and Conferences

  • Behavioural Change and Public Policy, European Consortium on Political Research (ECPR), 44th Joint Sessions of Workshops, Scuola Normale Superiore, Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna and University of Pisa, Pisa, (workshop director with Dr Silke Beck), 24–28 April 2016.
  • The Nudged Consumer - The Rise of Behavioural Governance, Session at the International Conference on Consumer Research (ICCR) 2016, Kompetenzzentrum Verbraucherforschung NRW, (co-chair with Dr Kathrin Loer), 26–27 September 2016.
  • Economic Discourse in the Twenty-First Century: Narratives, Networks and New Modes of Regulation, Panel at the Conference on Interpretive Policy Analysis (IPA), Lille, (co-chair with Dieter Plehwe), 8–10 July 2015.
  • Governing Welfare State Reforms in Times of Crisis: The Role of Expertise and Policy Knowledge, Panel at the International Conference on Public Policy (IPCC), Milan, (co-chair with Sonja Blum), 1–4 July 2015.
  • Evidence-Based Policy (EBP): International Impacts of a Hegemonic Discourse, Panel at the Conference on Interpretive Policy Analysis (IPA), Lille, (co-chair with Anna Wesselink and Hal Colebatch), 8–10 July 2015.
  • Regulatory Science—Transformations at the Science Policy-Public Nexus, 8th ECPR General Conference. University of Glasgow, United Kingdom, (co-chair with Rebecca-Lea Korinek), 3–6 September 2014.
  • Critical Perspectives on Evidence-based Policy Making, 22nd World Congress of Political Science, International Political Science Association (IPSA), Research Committee 32 'Public Policy and Administration' (co-chair with Prof. Dr. Pekka Kettunen, University of Jyväskylä, 8–12 July 2012.


  • Co-editor, Advances in Critical Policy Analysis Book Series, Edward Elgar Publishing
  • Advisory Board, Innovation: The European Journal of Social Science Research
  • International Public Policy Association (IPPA)
  • International Political Science Association (IPSA)
  • Co-speaker, working group 'Politics, Science and Technology', German Political Science Association (DVPW)
  • Science and Democracy Network (SDN), Harvard Kennedy School of Government


  • Best Dissertation Award, Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences, University of Tübingen, Germany, 2011

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