- Judith Sijstermans
- Edinburgh UK EH8 9LD
- Research Interests
- Political parties, European Union, Policy learning, Europeanization, Nationalism, Regionalism, Socialization, Policy networks, Policy transfer, Multi-level governance, British Politics
My PhD research explores whether, how, and under what conditions European stateless nationalist and regionalist parties (SNRPs) influence each other’s policy choices. In particular, I ask: does transnational collaboration between European SNRPs impact their policy and strategy making processes?
To study the relationship between collaborating political parties, I adopt a policy transfer and policy learning approach. This approach also allows me to engage with existing literature on multi-level governance, networks, and Europeanization/socialization processes. My research can be differentiated from these approaches due to its focus on heterarchical and horizontal (rather than hierarchical and vertical) relationships in the European Union. Furthermore, by understanding the consequences of collaboration, my research counterbalances prevalent competitive explanations of political party behaviour.
I look at the cases of the Scottish National Party, the Frisian National Party, Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya, Partit Democrat Catala (formerly Convergencia Democratica de Cataluna), and the Union Démocratique Bretonne.
Political Parties; European Union; Policy Transfer; Policy Learning; Nationalism; Europeanization; Socialisation; Policy Networks
2015—MSc International and European Politics (with Distinction), University of Edinburgh
- Dissertation: "The Curious Case of Collaboration: Explaining Plaid Cymru’s Policy Development through Policy Transfer." Awarded a mark of 78% (UK First).
2014—BA Political Science (Highest Honours and Highest Distinction), University of California at Berkeley
- Dissertation: "Explaining the Perseverance of Independence in Europe: Strategic Reinforcements of Minority Nationalist Pro-Europeanism."
2016 Awarded a UACES & James Madison Charitable Trust PhD Scholarship for fieldwork.
2015-2018 Funded by a University of Edinburgh Graduate School of Social and Political Science Studentship.
2014 Edinburgh Santander Master's Scholarship
2014 Winner of the Departmental Citation, given yearly to the student with most outstanding achievement in political science at UC Berkeley
- “Scottish Parliament election preview: the last beats of a Labour ‘heartland’ in Central Scotland?” on Democratic Audit Scotland, 25 April 2016.
- “Problematising the SNP’s EU Status Quo” on the University of Edinburgh’s European Futures blog, 16 February 2016.
Relevant Work Experience
2016-Present: Programme Assistant to the MSc in International and European Politics
2016-Present: Tutor on courses such as 'Politics in A Changing World' and 'Comparative Politics in a Globalized World.'
2015-Present: Parliamentary Researcher at the Scottish Parliament
2015: Research Intern to the Chief Executive of Stirling Council
2014: Impact Case Study Writer at Edinburgh Research and Innovation
2013: Research Intern at the Democratic Progress Institute
- Wrote "The Experiences of Scottish Devolution: Constitutional Debate up to the 2014 Independence Referendum."
- Transcribed and facilitated conference on "The Relationship between State and Media and its effect on Conflict Resolution."