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  H o m e





European Network on Inequality (ENI)
ENI Visitors

In addition to sending Doctoral Fellows to Europe for research residencies, the Harvard Inequality program also hosts scholars from our European partner institutions for short-term visits. Senior scholars from the European Network may nominate Ph.D. candidates from their institutions for visiting research fellow appointments at Harvard, which typically allow for a one-semester visit.



ENI visiting research fellows, 2011-2012

:: Alexi Gugushvili (fall 2011)
:: Jennifer Oser (AY 2011-2012)


Alexi GugushviliAlexi Gugushvili
European University Institute

Alexi is a doctoral researcher in Political and Social Sciences at the European University Institute (EUI) in Florence, Italy. He holds BA in Economics from the Sokhumi State University, MSc in Policy Studies from the University of Edinburgh and has been a Hansard Research Scholar at the London School of Economics. Before joining the EUI, Alexi worked for various governmental and civil society organizations, including the Personal Accounts Delivery Authority of the UK Department for Work and Pensions, and taught courses in Social Policy and Econometrics in several universities in the Republic of Georgia. Using quantitative and qualitative methods, his current research interests include social stratification, welfare perceptions, emigration intentions and targeted social assistance. Alexi’s recent publications deal with pension reforms, welfare research framework and the interaction of life-course and social class in the less successful transitional societies. Lately, he has also been an external evaluator of the European Training Foundation and a country expert of the European Union Democracy Observatory on Citizenship.

:: Homepage


Jennifer OserJennifer Oser
Federmann School of Public Policy & Government, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Jennifer Oser has a joint appointment as a postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Multidisciplinary Program on Inequality and Social Policy at Harvard University, and at the University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg School for Communication. Her dissertation on citizen participation and participatory inequality was completed in 2012 at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s School of Public Policy and Government, and has been awarded the Polonsky Prize for Originality and Creativity. Her primary fields of research are citizen participation, cross-national political behavior, participatory inequality, and social policy. Recent publications include “Is Online Participation Distinct from Offline Participation?” in Political Research Quarterly (co-authored with Marc Hooghe and Sofie Marien) and “The Political Environment of Policymaking in Israel” by Magnes Press (in Hebrew, co-edited with Itzhak Galnoor and Alma Perez-Gadot).

:: See CV



ENI visiting research fellows, 2010-2011

Jennifer Oser
Federmann School of Public Policy & Government, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

(See AY 2011-2012)



ENI visiting research fellows, 2009-2010

:: Sandra Bermudez Torres (Spring 2010)

:: Jinjing Li (Spring 2010)

:: Frederic Renkens (Fall 2009-early spring 2010)

:: Maria Vaalavuo (Spring 2010)

:: Carolien van Ham (Spring 2010)


Sandra Bermudez TorresSandra Bermudez Torres
Pompeu Fabra University

Sandra is a PhD Candidate in the Department of Political and Social Science at Pompeu Fabra University (UPF) (Barcelona, Spain). Nowadays, she is a visiting scholar in the program of inequality and social policy at John Kennedy School of Government. Her research interests focus on political institutions, political inequality, political behaviour, public opinion and comparative politics. She has been a teacher assistant on political behaviour and public opinion, Spanish politics, and comparative politics at UPF. Additionally, Sandra has worked as a research assistant for the European Social Survey Spanish team. Starting at 2009, she has been an active member of the research team Democracy and Autonomous Communities in Spain: Society and Politics.


Jinjing LiJinjing Li
University of Maastricht

Jinjing Li is a Ph.D. Candidate with the research focus on dynamic microsimulation based pension policy evaluation. He received a master degree in social policy finance from Maastricht University in 2006. His primary research interests include public policy simulation and evaluation, together with the design of microsimulation models. Professionally, Jinjing also works with the Luxembourg and Belgium governments on several national policy simulation projects.


Frederic RenkensFrederic Renkens
European University Institute

Frederic Renkens is a third-year PhD student in Sociology at the European University Institute in Florence. His doctoral research focuses on the discourses and activities of French and American students in natural and engineering sciences. More specifically, he is interested in the influence of different academic institutional frameworks and social backgrounds on these discourses and activities. During his stay as a research fellow at Harvard, one of his aims will be to interview students in two American universities. Frederic holds a Master of research in sociology from the Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris and a Master in Engineering from the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne. He has a passion for nature and outside activities.


Maria VaalavuoMaria Vaalavuo
European University Institute

Maria is a PhD student at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy. She received her master’s degree in social policy in 2006 at the University of Turku, Finland. She has also studied political science at the Institute d’Études Politiques d’Aix-en-Provence, France. Her research examines the redistributive impact of public services in European welfare states and aims to improve the measurement of income inequality. Her other academic interests include gender issues, child poverty and “green” welfare state. Maria’s interest in income distribution started during her internship at the OECD where she worked on the publication “Publicly-provided Services and the Distribution of Resources” (2006).


Carolien van HamCarolien van Ham
European University Institute

Carolien van Ham is a PhD student in Political Science at the European University Insitute (EUI) in Florence. From January – April 2010, she will spend a semester at Harvard as a visiting research fellow at the Multidisciplinary Program on Inequality. Carolien's key research interests are representation, accountability and elections. In the context of her PhD, Carolien works on the following research topics: (1) Beyond Electoralism: Elections as instruments of democracy in new democracies. Investigates increasing number and variety of elections around the world, asking what makes elections substantively meaningful as instruments of popular choice of and influence on government and how this variation affects subsequent prospects for democratization. Propositions are tested with time-series-cross-sectional models using aggregate level data on elections in Central and Eastern European, Post-Soviet, Latin American and Sub-Sahara African democracies. (2) De-politicized democracies? Voter perceptions of policy choices in national elections in European democracies. Investigates to what degree voters perceive policy differences between political parties, how institutional and party system complexity affects these perceptions, and how such perceptions subsequently influence voting behavior. Propositions are tested with multi-level models using survey data for 25 European democracies from the European Election Studies and party and party system data collected by the author. Carolien holds a Master in Political Science from the University of Leiden and a Master of Sociology of Migration and Ethnic Minorities from the University of Utrecht (cum laude), both in the Netherlands, and receives PhD scholarships from NUFFIC and UACES. Before coming to EUI, she worked as a management consultant for national and local governments in the Netherlands, as a researcher for the Dutch Parliamentary Commission on Integration Policy, and as a researcher at the Instituto de Estudios sobre Migraciones (IEM) in Madrid, Spain.




ENI visiting research fellows, 2008-2009

Sunnee Billingsley, Ph.D. candidate in Sociology, Pompeu Fabra University (Sep 2008-Jan 2009).
Research topic: "The Social Impact of Market REform in Post-Communist Countries."

Mark Dawson, Ph.D. candidate in Law, European University Institute (Sep 2008-Jan 2009).
Research topic: The coordination of social protection systems in the EU, and its implications for perceptions of a "social deficit" in European integration.

Gerardo Maldonado, Ph.D. candidate in Political and Social Sciences, Pompeu Fabra University (Jan-Jun 2009).
Research topic: The influence of political intermediaries on partisan political preferences.

Denisa Sologon, Ph.D. Research Fellow in European Social Protection Policy, University of Maastricht (Jan 2009-Sep 2009).
Research topic: Lifetime intra-generational redistributive effects of mandatory pension systems.

Stan Van Alphen, Ph.D. candidate in Political and Social Sciences, European University Institute (Sep 2008-Jan 2009).
Research topic: The labour market outcomes of early school leavers.


Visiting researchers in academic year 2007-2008

Lynne Copson, Ph.D. candidate in Sociology, University of Bristol (Feb-April, 2008).
Research topic: "Zemiology: A Utopian Discourse?"

Evelyne Hübscher, Ph.D. candidate in Political Science, European University Institute (Sep 2007-Mar 2008).
Research topic: "The Impact of Government Partisanship on Redistribution in Open Economies."

Melissa Siegel, Ph.D. candidate in Social Protection Policy, Maastricht Graduate School of Governance, Maastricht University (Jan-Jul 2008).
Research topic: "Cash and Culture: The Determinants of Remittances and Remittance Channel Choice."


Visiting researchers in academic year 2006-2007

Seminar presentations

Professor Stephen Machin, London School of Economics and University College London, Professor Christoffer Green-Pedersen, University of Aarhus, and Professor Jorn-Steffen Pischke, London School of Economics, presented in the seminar series in the academic year 2006-2007.


Visiting researchers

Francscio Javier Moreno Fuentes, Ph.D., Research Fellow, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas (May- July 2007)
Research topic: "The historical development of social protection and immigration in the U.S. and the E.U."

Christiane Arndt, Ph.D. candidate, Maastricht School of Governance, University of Maastricht (February-November 2007)
Research topic: "Measuring governance and media capture"

Dr. Aycan Celikaksoy-Mortensen, School of Business, University of Aarhus (January-June 2007)
Research topic: "Migration, ethnic inequality, labor market integration and changing family structures of immigrants"

Stefanie Brodmann
, Ph.D. candidate, Department of Social & Political Sciences, University Pompeu Fabra (September-December 2006)
Research topic: "The economic adjustments of immigrants"



Visiting researchers in academic year 2005-06

Seminar presentations
Professor Jaap Dronkers, European University Institute, Florence, Professor Jens Alber, Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung, and Professor Simon Burgess, University of Bristol, presented in the Malcolm Wiener Center's Inequality and Social Policy seminar series in the academic year 2005-2006.

Visiting researchers

Juho Härkönen, Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Political and Social Sciences at the European University Institute, Florence (September-December 2005)
Research topic: "The social risks of children in jobless couples"

Mads Leth Jakobsen, Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Political Science at the University of Aarhus (September- December 2005)
Research topic: "The impact of ideas in global policy reform on the national policy process"

Nasar Meer, Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Sociology at the University of Bristol and visiting fellow at the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African American Studies at Harvard.
Research topic: "Muslims in Britain and the politics of multiculturalism"

Geranda Notten, Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Economics at the University of Maastricht (March - June 2006)
Research project: "Assessing poverty in the US and the EU"

Marit Skivenes, Research Associate at Fafo Labour Institute for Social Research, Oslo, and Professor at the University of Bergen (September-December 2005)
Research topic: "A comparative study of the normative legal framework for child protection policies in the U.S. and Norway"

Tim Wegenast, Ph.D. candidate, Department of Political & Social Sciences, University Pompeu Fabra (April-June 2006)
Research topic: "Educational policies in the age of open markets: trade specialization and political accountability in developing countries"

Jonathan White, Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Political and Social Sciences at the European University Institute, Florence (February - May 2006)
Research topic: "The political bond in Europe"


Visiting researchers in academic year 2004-05

Olga Salido Cortes, Professor at Universidad Complutense de Madrid and Research Collaborator of the Department of Political and Social Sciences, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona (May-July 2005)
Research topic: "The effect of economic cycles on income inequality among women"

Jason Strelitz, Ph.D. student LSE CASE (September-December 2005)
Research topic: "The Second Generation: pathways into poverty and prosperity for children of immigrants"





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