Dr. Ann-Kathrin Reinl

Ann-Kathrin ReinlContact details / research details / publications

Question & answer

What is your research about?

My LOTSEU research project, on which I will mainly work on during the upcoming years, deals with the relevance of local contexts for public opinion towards EU-wide solidarity policies. To be more precise, I examine whether the local environment in which a person is situated - i.e. a municipality’s economic performance or the proximity to crisis hotspots - is important for the formation of individual-level preferences. I am also part of the Euromanifestos project and will be involved in a larger Horizon Europe research project (ActEU) on trust and satisfaction with democracy from March next year.

Why the interest in that subject?

My research interest for this topic has already crystallised during my Master's degree and intensified over time - and unfortunately also due to the successive European crises. Many people in my private environment take the EU - and its benefits such as freedom of movement - for granted. But the future success of the Union is by no means guaranteed. The EU needs the commitment and cooperation of its citizens in order to meet the challenges we face today and those that lie ahead of us.

Why is your research socially relevant?

My research mainly investigates public opinion in crisis times. The European Union has witnessed a multitude of such challenges over the past decade(s) and constantly needs to find new ways to successfully combat (or at least mitigate) them. Public opinion towards policies of this kind is of fundamental importance for the legitimacy of the community and its future persistence. The insights gained through my work are therefore not only scientifically relevant but are also of outmost importance for politicians at all political levels.

What is the first thing you do when you have unexpected free time in your agenda?

In case I have some unexpected free time, I like to sit down in a lovely cafe, order an iced latte and either read a book or simply enjoy my surroundings. If I, however, prefer to stay at home instead of leaving the house, I will certainly play a round of Mario Kart on my Nintendo Switch.