Deutsch Intern
Institute of Political Science and Sociology

Research and Teaching

Research Focus

Climate and sustainability issues are among the greatest challenges of our time. Ulrike Zeigermann's research focuses on the social science challenges that sustainable transformation processes pose for political actors, institutions and societal decision-making processes. A central question in her work is how and under what conditions sustainability is integrated into different policy fields, social structures and organisations. This includes research on current and future issues of transnational sustainability governance. This involves new approaches to commoning and (self-)governance across different policy levels, and with the participation of diverse actors, including climate change, renewable energy, human rights and multiple crises in the Anthropocene.

The second research focus is knowledge in socio-ecological transformations. Ulrike Zeigermann's work aims to empirically investigate and theoretically explain new forms of knowledge circulation. The starting point is the controversial debate in sustainability research about the role of expertise in sustainability governance in general and how knowledge transfer in environmental, climate and energy policy in particular is changing in the context of multiple global crises. It focuses on global knowledge networks, which on the one hand promise innovative and participatory formats for sustainability through (digital) deliberation processes, but on the other hand raise new questions about the democratic legitimacy of these new structures and the representation of diverse interests and forms of (transformative) sustainability knowledge.


Courses in summer semester 2023

  • Sustainability Governance in the context of multiple crises 
  • Environmental Movements - Dynamics of Global Mobilization and Local Protest

Courses in winter semester 2022/2023

  • Energy Transitions: Actors, Policies and Conflicts 
  • Sustainable Development - A Critical Review and Introduction to Social Science Sustainability Research 
  • Research project Social Science Sustainability Studes: focus on Gender and Sustainability