Prof. Dr. Isabelle Stadelmann-Steffen

Professorship of Comparative Politics

Institute of Political Science

+41 31 684 83 55
+41 31 684 83 31
A 161
Postal Address
University Bern
Institute of Political Science
Fabrikstrasse 8
3012 Bern


Isabelle Stadelmann-Steffen was born in 1979 in Burgdorf, Switzerland. From 1999 to 2003 she studied political science and economics at the Universities of Bern and Geneva. In 2007, she completed her PhD under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Wolf Linder with the doctoral thesis “Policies, Women, and the Labor Market. Women’s Employment in Switzerland: An International and Inter-Cantonal Comparison.” In 2008, she was the recipient of a scholarship from the Swiss National Science Foundation (Schweizer Nationalfonds) for her post-doctoral studies at the University Konstanz (Germany) and at the European University Institute in Florence (Italy). 2006-2007 as well as 2009-2011 she worked at the Research Center for Social Capital at the University of Konstanz, where she was involved in various research projects dealing with volunteerism. In 2013 she received her habilitation from the University of Konstanz. From July 2011 until August 2014 she was assistant professor at the Institute of Political Science at the University of Bern, where she has been associate professor for comparative politics since then.
Her main research interests concern comparative public policy (in particular welfare state, energy and education policy), inequality, direct democracy as well as political participation and attitudes. She is thereby particularly interested in interlinkages between these different perspectives. Her work has been published in journals such as European Union Politics, European Journal of Political Research, Governance, Journal of Social Policy, European Sociological Review, Political Behavior, Electoral Studies, Non-Profit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, and Political Studies.

Recent Publications


  • LEEMANN, Lucas and STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle (2021). “Satisfaction with Democracy: When Government by the People brings Electoral Losers and Winners Together”, Comparative Political Studies (forthcoming). Best Paper Prize 2020 awarded by the ECPR Standing Group on Democratic Innovation.
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle (2021). “Switzerland: Political data and developments in 2020”, European Journal of Political Research, Political Data Yearbook (forthcoming).
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle; EDER, Christina; HARRING, Niklas; SPILKER, Gabriela and Alexia Katsandiou (2021).“A Framework for Social Tipping in Climate Change Mitigation: What We Can Learn from the Chlorofluorocarbons Phase-Out”, Energy Research & Social Science, December, 102307 (open access:
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle and Philippe THALMANN (2021). “What determines the attitude-behavior link when voting on renewable energy policies? The roles of problem perception and policy design” in Franzen, Axel and Sebastian Mader (eds.), Handbook of Environmental Sociology. Edward Elgar (forthcoming).
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle (2021). “Auf die Wartebank geschoben. Der Kampf um die politische Gleichstellung der Frauen in der Schweiz seit 1900 Seitz, Werner Zürich, Chronos Verlag (2020), 296 Seiten, ISBN 978-3-0340-1605-6”, Swiss Political Science Review 27(1): 217-220 (Book review).
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle and Clau DERMONT (2021). “Acceptance through Inclusion? Political and Economic Participation and the Acceptance of Local Renewable Energy Projects in Switzerland”, Energy Research & Social Science 71(1): 101818. (Manuscript)
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle and Christina EDER (2021). “Public opinion in policy contexts. A comparative analysis of domestic energy policies and individual policy preferences in Europe”, International Political Science Review 2(1): 78–94. (Manuscript)
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle; OEHRLI, Dominique and Adrian VATTER (2021). “Do Governments Delay the Implementation of Parliamentary Mandates? Examining Time Variation in Implementing Legislative Requests in Switzerland”, Policy Sciences 54: 663-690 (open access,


  • DERMONT, Clau and Isabelle STADELMANN-STEFFEN (2020). “The role of policy and party information in direct-democratic campaigns”, International Journal of Public Opinion Research 32(3), Autumn 2020: 442-466. (Manuscript)
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle and Clau DERMONT (2020). “Citizens’ Opinions About Basic Income Proposals Compared – A Conjoint Analysis of Finland and Switzerland”, Journal of Social Policy 49(2): 383–403. (Manuscript)
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle and Marlène GERBER (2020). “Voting in the rain – The impact of rain on participation in open-air assemblies”, Local Government Studies 46(3): 414-435. (Manuscript)
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle; RIEDER Stefan and Chantal STROTZ (2020). The Politics of Renewable Energy Production in a Federal Context: The Deployment of Small Hydropower in the Swiss Cantons. The Journal of Environment & Development, 29(1), 75–98. (Manuscript)


  • HEIDBREDER, Eva; STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle; THOMANN Eva and Fritz SAGER (2019). “EU Referendums in Context: What can we learn from the Swiss Case?”, Public Administration, 97: 370–383, Symposium on Multilevel Governance.
  • INGOLD, Karin, STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle and Lorenz KAMMERMANN (2019). “The Acceptance of Instruments in Policy Mix Situations: Citizens’ Perspective on Swiss Energy Transition”, Research Policy, Special Issue on Policy Mixes for Sustainability Transitions, 48(10): 103694.
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle (2019). “Bad News Is Bad News: Information Effects and Citizens’ Socio-Political Acceptance of New Technologies of Electricity Transmission”, Land Use Policy 81: 531-545. (Manuscript)
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle (2019). “How does working time flexibility affect gender-specific work intentions?” in: Careja, Romana; Emmenegger, Patrick and Nathalie Giger (eds.), The European Social Model under Pressure. Liber Amicorum in Honour of Klaus Armingeon. Springer: 297-312.


  • DERMONT, Clau and Isabelle STADELMANN-STEFFEN (2018). “Who decides? Characteristics of a Vote and its Influence on the Electorate”, Representation 54(4): 391-413 (awarded a ’honourable mention’ for the 2018 volume by the editorial board).
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle and Clau DERMONT (2018). “The unpopularity of incentive-based instruments: what improves the cost-benefit ratio?”, Public Choice 175: 37-62. (Manuscript)
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle; INGOLD, Karin; RIEDER, Stefan; DERMONT, Clau; KAMMERMANN, Lorenz and Chantal STROTZ (2018). Akzeptanz erneuerbarer Energie. Universität Bern, Interface Politikstudien Forschung Beratung, EAWAG.
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle and Linda SULZER (2018). “Just Another Brick in the Wall? The Relationship Between Classroom-Based Political Education and the Political Interest of Young Adults in Switzerland”, Journal of Youth Studies 21(4): 552-575.


  • ARNOLD, Tobias and Isabelle STADELMANN-STEFFEN (2017). “How Federalism Influences Welfare Spending: Belgium Federalism Reform Through the Perspective of the Synthetic Control Method”, European Journal of Political Research 56(3): 680-702.
  • DERMONT, Clau; INGOLD, Karin; KAMMERMANN, Lorenz and Isabelle STADELMANN-STEFFEN (2017). “Bringing the policy making perspective in: A political science approach to social acceptance”, Energy Policy 108: 359-368 (Selected as “Highlighted papers in Energy Policy” by the editorial team). (Manuscript)
  • KUMLIN, Staffan; HAUGSGJERD, Atle and Isabelle STADELMANN-STEFFEN (2017). “Welfare State Consequences for Trust: More Political than Social?”, in: Eric M. Uslaner (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Social and Political Trust, Oxford, Oxford University Press: 385-408.
  • STADELMANN-STEFFEN, Isabelle and Dominique OEHRLI (2017). “Perceiving Reconciliation: Childcare Policies and GenderedTime Conflicts”, Gender and Society 31(5): 597-623.

Die Forschung und Lehre im Bereich der Professur für Vergleichende Politik umfasst politikwissenschaftliche Analysen und Fragestellungen aus einer vergleichenden Perspektive. Angelehnt an die Forschungsinteressen der Lehrstuhlinhaberin liegt ein besonderes Augenmerk auf Themen wie vergleichende Wohlfahrtsstaatsforschung, Energiepolitik, soziale Ungleichheit, politische Einstellungen und Verhalten sowie empirische Methoden. Neben international vergleichenden Ansätzen wird nicht zuletzt auch eine subnational vergleichende Perspektive verfolgt. In diesem Sinne gliedert sich die Professur optimal in den Masterstudiengang „Comparative and Swiss Politics“ ein.



PhD Candidates

Student Assistant

Scientific Collaborator



Im Rahmen aktueller Energieforschungsprojekte suchen wir Masterstudent:innen, die eine MA-Arbeit im Bereich kantonale Energiepolitik verfassen. Melden Sie sich!