ECMI student receives a prize for young scientists: discussing the refugee crisis and political rhetoric

How has the refugee crisis impacted the development of radical right-wing political parties in Germany and Austria? To explore this topic Juliane von Daak wrote her prize-winning MA thesis under the supervision of Dr. Raul Carstocea.

Juliane von Daak has recently graduated from the MA European Studies Programme at the Europa-Universität Flensburg. After being a student of the ECMI seminar on Minority Protection Regime in her third semester, she wrote her master’s thesis under the supervision of ECMI Senior Research Associate Dr. Raul Carstocea. Juliane’s work on the impact of the refugee crisis on the political rhetoric and policy in EU member states received the prestigious Dr. Hans Adolf Rossen prize for young scientists. Juliane talked to our InfoChannel about her work and shared some of her findings.

In her thesis Juliane analyzed the development and rhetoric of the main political parties in Austria and Germany since 2013. Her findings show the strong impact of the refugee crisis on the right-wing political parties and the increase of radical political rhetoric. In terms of majority parties, her research has shown no effect on party program either in Germany or in Austria, however the number of radical personal statements made by different party members has considerably increased. For her research Juliane used a method of frequency analysis, checking party programs, speeches, media and social media.

In her third semester Juliane took the ECMI MA seminar on the Minority Protection Regime at the Europa-Universität Flensburg, where she learnt about minority rights and also met her future supervisor Dr. Raul Carstocea: “As Raul was also interested in right wing populism, I approached him regarding my thesis work. At the ECMI seminar I was able to learn generally about human rights and minority rights, but also took advantage of the discussions to exchange ideas and develop critical thinking.” After the defense both supervisors, Dr. Carstocea and Dr. Laura Asarite, advised Juliane to submit her work for the Dr. Hans Adolf Rossen prize.

“We did not think that the thesis would be eligible for the prize, which is mostly given to scientific work in economics,” said Juliane. “However, it was successful as the topic is very up to date and also, the same type of the research methodology can be applied to explore other cases across the EU. I also made a clear connection between the political situation in a country and the economy, to highlight the importance of the topic in terms of economics as well.”

The Dr. Hans Adolf Rossen prize is an annual prize awarded by the Schleswig-Holstein Chamber of Commerce and the Europa-Universität Flensburg to outstanding work done by young scientists in the region.

The ECMI congratulates Juliane on her excellent work and wishes success in her future endeavors!

About the ECMI Minority Regime Seminar

“The European Minority Rights and Minority Protection Regime” is the title of the ECMI seminar taught jointly by the ECMI team. The Seminar addresses aspects of minority history and politics as well as social and cultural issues and emerging new challenges to minority protection. The major aim of this Seminar is to provide students with in-depth knowledge and robust skills on the basis of which to develop an informed understanding of minority issues in the 21st Century. The Seminar will familiarize students with critical and post-structural methods of analysis through the reading and discussion of key texts. See more

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