My name is Stefan Wallaschek and I am currently a post-doctoral researcher at the Europa-Universität Flensburg (Germany). I am working in the research project "Value conflicts in a differentiated Europe: The impact of digital media on value polarisation in Europe (ValCon)" and I am affiliated to the Interdisciplinary Centre of European Studies (ICES).

Before, I worked at the University of Hildesheim in the SOLDISK research project and in 2019, I received my PhD from the Bremen International Graduate School of Social Sciences (BIGSSS) at the University of Bremen/Jacobs University.

My research interests are in the intersection of political communication, comparative politics and the political sociology of Europe.



Article on Wealthy Business Owners in Germany

How are rich people and their wealth framed in the public discourse? Nora Waitkus (Tilburg University/LSE) and I examine this question in an article in Social Justice Research. Based on a comprehensive analysis of German media outlets (2014-18), we show a rather legitimizing public discourse on wealth inequalities. The article Legitimate Wealth? How Wealthy Business Owners are Portrayed in the Press can be freely accessed because it is published open access. A tweet by Nora also sums up our article very well.

Article on leadership communication in Germany during COVID19-pandemic

Marianne Kneuer (TU Dresden) and I published an article on the leadership communication of German Chancellor Angela Merkel during the first phase of the COVID19-pandemic. We analysed her public communication in official speeches in parliament, in press conferences and her weekly video podcast to explain her different framing strategies. The article Framing COVID-19: Public Leadership and Crisis Communication By Chancellor Angela Merkel During the Pandemic in 2020 has been published in German Politics.


Article on gender equality debates on Twitter

The first article from the ValCon research project is published. We look at the value of gender equality by analysing the twitter debates in three European countries (Germany, Italy, Poland)  around the International Women's Day 2021. Our work compares who engages in these online debates, which issues are raised and how Twitter users engage online. Our study is published as Same same but different? Gender politics and (trans-)national value contestation in Europe on Twitter in the open access Journal Politics & Governance. It is included in a special issue, edited by Pieter de Wilde, Astrid Rasch and Michael Bossetta, on Analyzing Citizen Engagement with European Politics Through Social Media.


Article on solidarity frames during the COVID-19 pandemic

Together with Franziska Ziegler (University of Hildesheim), I published an article on Making sense of the ‘new normal’: The COVID-19 crisis in the communication of the prime ministers of Ireland and New Zealand in the open access Journal Culture, Practice & Europeanization. Our article compares the governmental communication and in particular the framing of solidarity by Leo Varadkar and Jacinda Ahern during the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our article is published in a special issue, edited by Stefanie Börner (OvGU Magdeburg), on Practices of Solidarity in the COVID-19 pandemic.


Article in European Journal of Social Theory

The SOLDISK research group from the University of Hildesheim in which I worked until September 2020 published an article on Claiming solidarity. A multilevel discursive reconstruction of solidarity in the European Journal of Social Theory. We develop an encompassing definition of solidarity and demonstrate how discursive solidarity claims can be conceptualized in a multi-level system. 


CfP: Panel at DVPW conference 2021

Ann-Kathrin Reinl (GESIS) and I organise a panel on Redistributive politics and the question of Social Europe in the EU in years of turmoil. We look for submissions that shed light on redistributive politics in the EU, the Europeanisation of social policies and the role of Social Europe during the multiple crises. The full call can be read online here (p. 76). The deadline to submit an abstract is on February 28th 2021. The panel is supported by the DVPW Section 'Political Sociology'.


Book on empirical solidarity research

My short overview on empirical solidarity research has been published in the book series Springer essentials as Empirische Solidaritätsforschung. Ein Überblick. It sorts the field of solidarity research into three approaches: structure-oriented, actor-oriented and discourse-oriented approaches, and gives an overview about most recent studies and results. It shall help students and researchers to get a quick oerview about the state of the field. The book can be accessed here.


Chapter on European parliamentary election 2019

I have written a chapter on Analyzing the European Parliamentary Elections in 2019: Actor Visibility and Issue-Framing in Transnational Media. It deals with the electoral campaign to the European Parliament in transnational media and how these outlets cover it, which actors are present and which frames are visible. The chapter can be accessed here. My contribution is part of the edited volume Die Europawahl 2019. Ringen um die Zukunft Europas, edited by Michael Kaeding, Manuel Müller and Julia Schmälter.


2 articles included in issues

Two articles of my dissertation project have been included in journal issues. The article Framing Solidarity in the Euro crisis: A Comparison of the German and Irish Media Discourse, published online on March 5th 2019, has been included in the second issue of 2020 in New Political Economy. The article Discursive Construction of Solidarity: Analysing Public Claims in Europe's Migration Crisis, published online on March 22nd 2019, has now been included in the first issue of 2020 in Political Studies.


CfP: 2 Panels at ECPR General Conference 2020

I am organising two panels for the next ECPR General Conference 2020. The first one is on The Migration-Welfare Nexus in European Welfare States: Actors, Frames, Positions and I will chair the panel with Eloisa Harris (BIGSSS/University of Bremen). We are interested in work that deals with the '(dis)connection of welfare and immigration by intermediary actors in their public debates and policies'. The full call can be read online here. The deadline to submit an abstract is on February 1st 2020. The panel is included in the section 'International Migration Policies and Politics: Current Challenges and Opportunities' which is endorsed by the ECPR Standing Group on Migration and Ethnicity.


The second panel is organised by Ann-Kathrin Reinl (GESIS) and myself and deals with Redistributive Politics and the Question of Social Europe in the Post-Crisis EU. We look for submissions that shed light on redistributive politics in the EU, the Europeanisation of social policies and the role of Social Europe after the crisis. The full call can be read online here. The deadline to submit an abstract is on February 10th 2020. The panel will be included in the respective section of the ECPR Standing Group ‘Political Economy and Welfare State Politics’.


Dissertation open access published

My cumulative dissertation 'Mapping Solidarity in Europe. Discourse Networks in the Euro Crisis and Europe's Migration Crisis'  has been published via the State and University Library Bremen (SuUB) as open access document. It has a stable hyperlink from the German national library (DNB). It includes each of the five text that has been previously published (see publications). The dissertation can be downloaded with the following link.

New article in JEPP

My article "Contested solidarity in the Euro crisis and Europe’s migration crisis: A discourse network analysis" has been published as Online First version in the Journal of European Public Policy (JEPP). As part of my cumulative dissertation, I compare the solidarity discourse in the Euro crisis and Europe's migration crisis in German newspapers from 2010 to 2015. By focusing on the framing and presence of party actors in the public solidarity debate, I demonstrate that the solidarity debate in the Euro crisis is strongly linked to the austerity paradigm. The migration crisis shows, however, I unique framing of political solidarity that is nonetheless challenged by security and demarcation claims in 2015 in particular.


New article in special issue on Europe's migration crisis

I contributed to a Special Issue in the open access journal Social Inclusion. The special issues is on "The European Refugee Controversy: Civil Solidarity, Cultural Imaginaries and Political Change" and is edited by Gert Verschraegen and Robin Vandevoordt. My article "The Discursive Appeal to Solidarity and Partisan Journalism in Europe’s Migration Crisis" focuses on the partisan journalism in times of crisis and asks whether the ideological difference of media outlets and the involvement in a crisis effects their framing of solidarity and which actors are present in the media. I demonstrate that the partisan journalism persists in Europe's migration crisis with regard to the actor constellation, but the call for solidarity is widely shared across ideological differences of the analysed media (daily quality newspapers in Germany and Ireland).