- Sissela Matzner
- Edinburgh UK EH8 9LD
- Research Interests
- Foreign Policy, Political parties, Responsibility, Narratives, Humanitarianism, Humanitarian intervention, Political violence, Conflict
The Politics of Intervention: A Role Theoretical Exploration of Political Parties’ Foreign Policy on Military Intervention in Ongoing Conflicts
My thesis explores how political parties understand and frame crises and conflict abroad, and how they come to positions on whether or not to intervene militarily. Using role theory, I assume that political parties develop national role conceptions, because they need the state to enact their ideas about foreign relations in the current international system. I look at how different parties interpret the state’s national role differently.
I aim to contribute to and close the gap between the Foreign Policy Analysis scholarship and the Comparative Party Politics literature. I base my project on research that established that parties (can) matter in foreign policy decision making and that international relations and developments (can) matter to party politics.
Research Skills for the Social Sciences: Data Collection; Research Design; Theory and Practice of Social and Political Research; Explaining and Understanding in Social and Political Research; Analysing Qualitative Data (auditor).
I also audited the honours courses Human Rights in International Relations and Democracy and its Discontents.
M.Sc. by Research in History, University of Edinburgh.
M.Sc. Social Policy and Planning, LSE, Graduate Merit Award.
B.A. Politics, University of Essex.
Research assistant (full-time 6 weeks) for Professor Christine Bell (School of Law). I coded peace agreements in French-, Portuguese- and Spanish-language for a UN Women funded research project, February-March 2015.
Research assistant for Dr Eve Hepburn (School of Social and Political Science). I transcribed interviews with Bavarian and Quebecois party officials, and collected party manifestos from Bavaria, Catalunia and Quebec, February-May 2015.
Course convener and co-convenor
Fundamentals 2: PIR (PLIT08010), course convenor, autumn 2015 and 2016.
PIR Final Year Careers Events, convenor and host, 2015-2016 and 2016-2017.
Parties and Party Systems in Contemporary Democracies (PLIT10083), co-convenor and senior tutor, autumn 2015 (4 tutorial groups).
EUSA Teaching Award nominee 2016 for Parties and Party Systems and 2017 for PIR Final Year Careers Events.
International Cooperation in Europe and Beyond (PLIT 08006), autumn 2015 (3 tutorial groups) and autumn 2014 (5 tutorial groups).
Training, School of Social and Political Sciences, 2014-2015.
Institute for Academic Development (IAD) courses 2014-2015: Introduction to Online Tutoring, Effective Tutoring, and Troubleshooting Tutorials.
Other University of Edinburgh work experience (by skills)
Communication and Public Relations
Communications Officer (current), Political Settlements Research Programme. I work on internal and external communication. I update the PSRP website and help to disseminate research outputs among other tasks.
Course preparation and handbook writing
Assistant (past), Dr Carmen Gebhard (School of Social and Political Science). I worked on the 'postgraduate induction experience' project to bring all useful information for new SPS Taught Masters students into one place on the website. I drafted the Learning and Academic Skills Handbook on critical thinking and writing at postgraduate level, including practical examples and exercises.
Event organisation, hosting and admin
Assistant (current), Centre for Security Research (School of Social and Political Science). I organised a series of network seminars on global health, international conflict and climate security. I am in charge of the centre's University of Edinburgh security related researcher database, webpage, events and communication.
I am currently assisting with the organisation of CeSeR's June '17 conference on International Security After Brexit and Trump.
Assistant (past), Dr Eve Hepburn (School of Social and Political Science). I assisted with the organisation of a series of careers events for final year Politics and International Relations MA honours students. I invited guest speakers from higher education, private, public and third sector 2014-2015.
From autumn 2015 I convene and host the series of events (see above course convening and co-convening).
Report and summary writing
As Rapporteur (past), I attended and wrote summaries of the presentations and discussions at the Summer School on Inclusive Political Settlements: Theory and Practice of Transforming Conflict of the Political Settlements Research Programme, June 20-22, 2016, and the Summer School on Political Violence organised by Dr Mathias Thaler (School of Social and Political Science) and Dr Niall Whelehan (School of History, Classics and Archaeology), June 24-26, 2015.
Exam invigilator for students with special arrangements (current), April/May 2015, August 2015 , December 2015, and April/May 2016.
Please contact me for information about my relevant current and past non-University of Edinburgh work experience.
Conferences and publications
'Roundtable on Modern Conflict' panelist, January 31, 2017, Centre for the Study of Modern Conflict, School of History, Edinburgh.
‘The Politics of Intervention - Parties and the Foreign Policy of the Use of Force: a Question of Responsibility?’, June 24, 2016, CEEISA Conference, Ljubljana.
‘Political Parties’ Narratives of Responsibility Roles in the Foreign Policy of Intervention’, June 15, 2016 BISA Conference, Edinburgh.
‘Political Parties: National Role Conceptions and Narratives of Intervention in Foreign Policy’, March 18, 2016, ISA Annual Convention, Atlanta.
‘Political Parties and Humanitarian Intervention: a Question of Responsibility?’, May 28-29, 2015, Graduate Conference in International Political Theory, University of St Andrews.
Policy and review papers, briefs and reports
Bell, C., Matzner, S. and O’Rourke, C., A Chronology of Colombian Peace Processes and Peace Agreements (2015) briefing paper.
Jarman, N. and Matzner S., Political Parties and Hate Crime, a Review Paper, (2012) Institute for Conflict Research, Belfast.
Matzner S. ‚Kultur und Kunst, Bildung und Jugend’ in Österreich im Europarat 1956-2006 Bilanz einer 50-jährigen Mitgliedschaft, Ed. Waldemar Hummer, Böhlau Verlag Wien, 2007, pp. 771.
Matzner G. and Matzner S. ‘Kein Ende von Geschichte’ (on Scotland) in Zeitschrift International, Vol. IV/2014.
Matzner G. and Matzner S. ‚Unterhauswahlen - und was nun?‘ (on the UK) in Zeitschrift International Vol. II/2015.
Political Settlement Research Programme, Inclusive Political Settlements: Theory and Practice of Transforming Conflict, September 2016 (Day 1 contributor).
Whelehan N. and Thaler, M., Report on the 2015 Edinburgh Summer School on Political Violence, December 2015 (Day 2 contributor).
Matzner, S. ‚Linke Politik: veraltet, unglaubwürdig und unwählbar? Der Fall der britischen Labour Party.‘ on blog.sektionacht.at, August 2015.
Matzner S. ‚Das Referendum zur Schottischen Unabhängigkeit – Eindrücke.‘ on blog.sektionacht.at, November 2014.
Matzner S. ‚Die Öffnung der Schleusen.‘ on blog.sektionacht.at, January 2013, also on the website of the Bund Sozialistischer AkademikerInnen, Intellektueller & KünstlerInnen.
- German: native speaker
- French: fluent
- English: fluent
- Spanish: intermediate
Voluntary activities at the University of Edinburgh
- Organiser of a Politics and International Relations research student symposium, November 2016, funded by the student-led special projects grant of the Graduate School.
- Co-convener of the International Relations Research Group, (School of Social and Political Science) responsible for the update of its webpages, 2014-2015.
- Politics and International Relations PhD Peer Mentor 2014-2015.
- Point Person for the PIR first year research students’ showcase, January-April 2014.
Research groups and network memberships
- Affiliated Student to the Political Settlements Research Programme (PSRP), University of Edinburgh
- FPA and Role Theory Research Group, University of Edinburgh
- Gender History Network, University of Edinburgh
- International Relations Research Group, University of Edinburg
- PSRP Research Meetings, University of Edinburgh