Florian Stoeckel, PhD
I am a political scientist interested in comparative politics, European politics, and political psychology. I received my PhD in political science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2014. Currently, I am a Lecturer at the University of Exeter in the UK. Previously, I was a Max Weber Postdoctoral Fellow at the European University Institute in Florence.
University of Exeter
1/9/2020 I was awarded a grant by the British Academy for a project entitled Distrust, Conspiracies, and the Political Challenges of Coping with Covid-19. I collaborate on this project with my co-investigators Sofia Vasilopulou (University of York) and Jason Reifler (Exeter). We will conduct surveys and experiments in the UK, Germany, and Italy to understand the role of political trust and conspiracies in the context of Covid-19.
25/8/2020 Presentation of my research on the politics of vaccine hesitancy in Europe at the ECPR General Conference (online), co-authored with Charlie Carter, Ben Lyons, and Jason Reifler. The slides can be found on the left hand side of this page.
6/8/2020 New Publication in the Journal of Elections, Public Opinion & Parties, co-authored with Michal Onderco: Conspiratorial thinking and foreign policy views: Evidence from Central Europe. Abstract: Foreign policy analysts assume that conspiratorial thinking is linked to citizens’ foreign policy views and in particular to a preference among citizens for an alignment with Russia rather than the West. Empirical studies on the relationship between conspiratorial thinking and citizens’ foreign policy views are, however, lacking, despite a growing general academic interest in its origins and consequences . Our analysis breaks new ground by empirically evaluating the relationship between conspiratorial thinking and foreign policy preferences based on ISSP survey data for Slovakia. We find that conspiratorial thinking decreases the extent to which citizens prefer their country to be aligned with the West. The effect of conspiratorial thinking is substantively meaningful and on par with other predictors of foreign policy views.
16/5/2020 New publication in The International Journal of Press/Politics, coauthored with Ben Lyons, Vittorio Merola, and Jason Reifler: How Politics Shape Views Toward Fact-Checking: Evidence from 6 European Countries.
Abstract: Fact-checking has spread internationally, in part to confront the rise of digital disinforma- tion campaigns. American studies suggests ideological asymmetry in attitudes towards fact- checking, as well as greater acceptance of the practice among those more interested in and knowledgeable about politics. We examine attitudes toward fact-checking across 6 European counties to put these findings in a broader context (N = 6,067). We find greater familiarity with and acceptance of fact-checking in Northern Europe (Sweden, Germany) than elsewhere (Italy, Spain, France, Poland). We further find two dimensions of political antipathy: a left-right di- mension and an “anti-elite” dimension (including dissatisfaction with democracy and negative feelings toward the E.U.), the latter of which more consistently predicts negative feelings to- ward fact-checkers in the countries examined. Our findings demonstrate that despite general acceptance of the movement, significant political divides remain. Those less likely to trust fact- checkers could be more vulnerable to disinformation targeting these divides, leading to a spiral of cynicism.
16/5/2020 Times Higher Education (THE) quotes my work on a collective European identity and Erasmus students in an article on 'European universities': https://www.timeshighereducation.com/features/are-european-universities-really-possible#node-comments
12/12/2019 Piece on implications of experimental research findings on the role of Brexit identities for voting in the British General Elections 2019 published in the Monkey Cage Column of the Washington Post.
10/12/2019 Implications of results from my research with student Max Talman on Brexit identities for the General Elections in the UK in 2019: press release published by the University of Exeter.
3/7/2019 Commentary on the nomination of Ursula von der Leyen for the European Commission Presidency published in The European. www.theeuropean.de/florian-stoeckel/die-eu-braucht-keine-neuen-mythen-mit-von-der-leyen-chance-vertan/
28/6/2019 Blog post for the Centre for European Governance on the new project (with Joelle Taster) on public support for conspiracy theories in Europe: tiny.cc/8evy8y
17/5/2019 LSE Europp blog post on EU Misperceptions survey published! More results from the Exeter EU Misperceptions Survey can be found here on a site dedicated to the survey.
19/3/2019 First results from a cross national survey project on EU related misperceptions published on the website of factcheckeu. Prof Jason Reifler and I developed the survey in collaboration with FactcheckEU. More results will follow soon: factcheckeu.info/en/article/factcheckeu-poll-56-germans-think-eu-wants-cucumbers-be-straight?fbclid=IwAR0kF00FBJwnrL6Tt7k_NobEJCaAdvMNmYhVp5EQLlBhTTRYbSjOyFPhwbs
1/11/2017 New Publication in the European Journal of Political Research
The paper "The Politics of International Redistribution: Explaining Public Support for Fiscal Transfers in the EU", co-authored with Hanna Kleider, was accepted for publication in the European Journal of Political Research. Abstract: With the Euro Crisis and the creation of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), fiscal transfers between EU member states have become a particularly contested aspect of European integration. How should we understand the public backlash against this mechanism? And, what explains voter preferences over international transfers more generally? Using data from the from the 2014 European Elections Study, we conduct the first cross-national analysis of voters’ preferences on international transfers. Our analysis reveals a strong association between voters’ non-economic cultural orientations, i.e. their cosmopolitanism, and their position on transfers. At the same time, we find that voters’ economic left-right orientations are crucial for a fuller understanding of the public conflict over transfers. This counters previous research that finds economic left-right orientations to be of little explanatory value. We demonstrate that the association between economic left-right orientations and preferences over international transfers is conditional on a person’s social class. Among citizens in a high income class an economically left-leaning position is associated with support for transfers, whereas it is associated with opposition to transfers among citizens in a low income class.
08/05/2017 My Erasmus panel study quoted in CITYLAB
In a story entitled "Defining European Identity in a Divided Europe", Olga Mecking quotes my research on Erasmus students and European identity.
07/04/2017 New Publication in the Journal of Common Market Studies
The paper "Mobilizing citizens for costly policies: the conditional effect of party cues on support for international bailouts in the European Union", coauthored with Theresa Kuhn, has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Common Market Studies. Abstract: Previous research finds citizens’ attitudes towards international redistribution in the European sovereign crisis to be related to party preferences. This article further reveals the nature of this link. We show that citizens follow party cues on international bailouts, rather than having merely ideologically congruent positions. By employing an original survey experiment that exposes respondents to elite cues, we additionally uncover underlying dynamics. First, party cues mobilize support for bailouts even in the face of salient elite dissent and, second, even a strong elite consensus does not affect citizens without PID and low levels of political sophistication. The findings of the experiment are cross-validated with data from the voter survey of European Election Study 2014. The results suggest that current debates about international bailout packages deepen a polarization between politicized and non-politicized Europeans. The full text can be accessed here.
26/08/2015 NEW PUBLICATION in Political Psychology
My paper "Contact and Community: The Role of Social Interactions for a Political Identity is forthcoming in Political Psychology. Abstract: Can social interaction contribute to a sense of community that transcends national borders? This question was initially raised by Deutsch (1953) and revived by Fligstein (2008). My analysis makes two contributions to this literature. First, insights from social psychology are applied to specify the microfoundations for why contact across group boundaries can be related to a collective identity. Second, a new three-wave panel data set is used to examine the relationship empirically. The sample includes almost 1,500 students at 38 German universities. The results show that social interaction contributes to a European identity, but that it is in particular contact with other international students rather than contact with hosts that fosters it most effectively. The data also reveal that contact has a more profound impact on individuals with a weak European identity to begin with. Finally, the change I find is stable after students return to their home institutions.
19/06/2015 JOURNAL OF EUROPEAN PUBLIC POLICY BEST ARTICLE AWARD
Together with Theresa Kuhn, I received an award for the best article published in Journal of European Public Policy in 2014, for our article ‘When European integration becomes costly: the euro crisis and public support for European economic governance’, JEPP 21(4): 624-64.
Please see my contribution to the Max Weber blog of the European University Institute for a summary of the article.
Statement of the committee: “We looked for papers that stood out in terms of theoretical and methodological sophistication and that made an original and significant contribution to the field. The article by Theresa Kuhn and Florian Stoeckel fitted all these criteria. In it, they analyse support among citizens for further economic integration in the European Union, an issue that has become highly relevant following the global financial crisis. On the basis of a careful analysis, they show that support for further economic integration is determined by a different set of factors than support for the EU in general. This finding has important implications for our understanding of public support for European integration. In short, the article makes a convincing, original and important argument about one of the key issues of European public policy today. It therefore justly deserves to win JEPP’s 2014 best article award.”
19/3/2015 EUENGAGE Horizion2020 project
The EUENGAGE project explores the current tension between EU supranational governance and popular mobilisation at the national level. My subproject within EUENGAGE examines how national political parties influence popular mobilization on EU topics by providing particular cues to their voters. I conduct survey experiments in ten EU member states to analyze this relationship. The 2.5 mio. Euro EUENGAGE grant funds activities of 18 researchers at five European universities during a period of three years (2015-2018); PI: Maurizo Cotta (Siena).