My expertise is in transatlantic relations, European politics, and foreign policy. I have researched and published across all three areas and have lived in Europe, both West and East, Cold War and post-Cold War. As part of my current research interest in transatlantic relations, I am increasingly integrating Latin America into my research.
I can be counted upon to assess current affairs in my areas of expertise in an articulate, yet reader- and listener-friendly, manner and I am available for consulting/research purposes and projects.
Please feel free to contact me if you have questions and/or projects related to my areas of expertise. Media inquiries especially welcome. You can reach me by using the email form provided on the contact page.
My present research can be seen as being informed by and concerned with three broad themes: transatlantic relations, European politics and societies, foreign policy. They reflect on the one hand my long-standing interest in the United States and its relations with Europe and, on the other hand, my post-PhD interest in the new Europe and its importance for questions of regional and global transformation and governance. In thinking and re-thinking several aspects and dimensions that make up the very notion of "transatlantic relations," Latin America has increasingly become part and parcel of my research focus.
I am presently engaged in an inter-disciplinary project on the transatlantic political tradition and its community. At issue for this project is the question if or rather to what extent we are able to identify “transatlantic relations” above and beyond the historical context of the Cold War. I think a persuasive case in this regard – the case for a transatlantic political community – can be made. Moreover, the knowledge guiding interest of the project is to identify and elaborate the emancipatory dimension and elements of this tradition and its community.
Obviously, this project is informed by the current crisis of transatlantic relations (with the Trump Presidency having been a symptom – and not the cause). Yet, more to the point, the project is a return to my interest in the United States and transatlantic relations that animated my choice of American Studies as my major at the University of Frankfurt/M. Furthermore, it presents a consolidation of my research interests in comparative political thought, comparative political economy, comparative historical political sociology, and comparative foreign and security policy. The project thereby reflects my (intellectual) biography.
European politics and societies
European integration and its associated normative, political, and institutional questions and issues, have been part of my scholarly work since my time as a Civic Education Project and DAAD Lecturer at the University of Cluj-Napoca, Romania, 1993-1996. In addition, since then, I continue to be fascinated by Romania and Southeastern Europe in general. Although I have not published on Romanian politics and society as such in some time, I have begun to reengage with the country and the region via my present project on transatlantic relations and my associated interest in foreign policy.
This third theme once again goes back to my interest in the United States and its relations with Europe. Yet foreign policy also serves as empirical anchor point for my larger project on the transatlantic political tradition and its community. Researching and analyzing bilateral relations allows one to get at both historical and abiding ideas and concerns between “America” and “Europe” in a more defined, empirically focused manner while, at the same time, not giving up on the complex constituents of “America” and “Europe” themselves. Foreign policy here becomes the place – the arena – in which those relations are articulated and in which the respective state projects are reflected.
US-Italian Relations: The Need for a New Frame, in Italien zwischen Krise und Aufbruch: Auf dem Weg zur dritten Republik? (Italy between Crisis and New Beginning: On the road to the Third Republic?), eds. Alexander Grasse, Markus Grimm, and Jan Labitzke. Berlin, etc: Verlag Springer VS, 2018. 487-515.
State Partnerships in a Turbulent World: US-German Relations and the Crisis of Transatlantic Relations, in Germany after Reunification: Analyses and Perspectives, guest editor F. Peter Wagner, special issue of Sociological Imagination, Journal of the Wisconsin Sociological Association, 53:2 (2017). 54-69.
“A Finger for Berlusconi:” Italy’s anti-immigration/anti-crime measures, Romanian realities, and the poverty of European citizenship. Politische Italien-Forschung (PIFO), occasional papers no. 4 (February 2009). Giessen: University of Giessen, Institut für Politikwissenschaft, 2009. http://www.uni-giessen.de/cms/fbz/fb03/institute/institut-fur-politikwissenschaft/pifo/pifo-occasional-papers
Security: Cosmopolitan and European. In: Chris Rumford, ed., Cosmopolitanism and Europe. Liverpool University Press, 2007. 221-238.
Sovereignty in Conflict: Conflicts of Sovereignty. In: Andreas Langenohl and Kirsten Westphal, eds., Conflicts in a Transnational World: Lessons from Nations and States in Transformation. Frankfurt/M., etc: Peter Lang, 2006. 27-45.
Sonderweg Romania? In: Henry F. Carey, jr. ed., Romania since 1989: Politics, Economics, and Society. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2004. 49-66.
Beyond “East” and “West”: On the European and Global Dimensions of the Fall of Communism. Protosociology, vol. 15, 2001, 244-273. Reprinted in: Gerhard Preyer and Mathias Bös, eds., Borderlines in a Globalized World: New Perspectives in a Sociology of the World System. Dordrecht, NL: Kluwer, 2002, 189-215.
Die rumänischen Parlaments- und Präsidentschaftswahlen im Jahre 2000: Zurück in die Zukunft? (The Romanian Parliamentary and Presidential Elections 2000: Back to the Future?). Politikinformation Osteuropa no. 88. Bonn: Friedrich-Ebert-Foundation, 2001.
From Monuments to Human Rights: Redefining Heritage in the Work of the Council of Europe. Report for the working group “Forward Planning: The Function of Cultural Heritage in a Changing Europe,” Cultural Heritage Foundation of the Council of Europe. CC-PAT (2001) 161, 9-27.
Rudolf Hilferding: Theory and Politics of Democratic Socialism. Atlantic Highlands, NJ: Humanities Press International, 1996.