PhD topic: The ‘life cycle’ of political activism participation: Interrelationships between behaviour and wellbeing
PhD supervisor: Dr Christian Krekel and Professor Liam Delaney
Nils’ research takes a comprehensive psychological perspective on participation in political action. Specifically, he investigates behavioural motivations and effects of being involved in activism movements across different contexts, as well as the mechanisms through which individuals adopt extreme ideologies over time. His PhD aims to contribute to a better understanding of pressing social issues and to inform policymaking in conflict regions and beyond.
Prior to starting the PhD, Nils completed his MSc in Behavioural Science at the LSE. His dissertation involved a series of representative field experiments in Iraq, showing that people’s motivation to engage in political action (especially violent/illegal forms) may in part be a defensive mechanism to compensate feelings of self-related uncertainty.
Having lived at various times in Germany, China, Lebanon and the UK, Nils has a broad background working in asset management and policy think tanks. He holds an undergraduate degree from the Frankfurt School of Finance, during which he spent a year abroad studying Chinese diplomacy at Fudan University in Shanghai.
Rob Farr Award for Best Dissertation (London School of Economics and Political Science, 2019), LSE PhD scholarship (2021)