Academic Profile

People Feature

Gwendolyn Sasse

Senior Research Fellow
Professor, Humboldt University, and Director of the Centre for East European and International Studies (ZOiS)

Research Interests: Post-Communist Transitions, Comparative Democratisation; Ethnic Conflicts; Minority Rights; EU Eastward Enlargement; EU Conditionality; Migration in Europe, Diaspora Politics; Contemporary Art and Politics.

Gwendolyn Sasse is currently the Director of the newly founded Centre for East European and International Studies (ZOiS) in Berlin and on secondment from Oxford. She is a Professorial Fellow at Nuffield College and Professor in Comparative Politics in the Department of Politics and International Relations and the School for Interdisciplinary Area Studies. Prior to her arrival in Oxford in 2007 she was a Senior Lecturer in the European Institute and the Department of Government at the London School of Economics. She holds a PhD in Political Science from the LSE (which was awarded the LSE Robert McKenzie Prize for the best dissertation). Her research has concentrated on different dimensions of regime change, with a particular emphasis on the post-communist region. Her book The Crimea Question: Identity, Transition, and Conflict, Cambridge, (Harvard University Press, 2007) won the Alexander Nove Prize, the Annual Book Prize awarded by the British Association for Slavonic and East European Studies. As part of a three-year project funded by the Leverhulme Trust she is currently working on the political behaviour of migrants, in particular the ‘political remittances’ migrants send ‘home’. This project combines original survey data, focus groups and interviews with contemporary migrants with an analysis of several thousand migrant letters sent from the US in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. She received an Oxford University Teaching Excellence Award in 2009.​ Since 2014 she has been a non-resident associate at the Think Tank Carnegie Europe.

She is currently completing a multi-year project funded by the Leverhulme Trust on ‘Political Remittances: Understanding the Political Impacts of Migration’ (2013-17).​ As part of this project she has conducted surveys, focus groups and individual interviews with East European migrants. She is also working with a large text corpus of historical letters sent by German immigrants to their homeland in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Gwendolyn Sasse