Our Team

Director and founder of Social Science Works is Hans Blokland. Team-members are Mirjam Neebe, Nils Wadt, Paola Perrin de Brichambaut and Philipp Bautz. Various interns and visiting scholars additionally are part of our team.

Moreover, we are supported by a growing number of Fellows. Please find more about them here.

Prof. Dr. Hans Blokland

Mirjam Neebe MA

Mirjam Neebe studied sociology and philosophy at the University of Potsdam and environmental management with a focus on political science at the Free University of Berlin. Her thesis is about the hybrid ethnic identities of students belonging to the second generation of immigrants in Germany. It shows how these young people, who can be regarded as examples of successful integration, create a ‘third space’ with new ethnic identities beyond assimilation into, or demarcation from, the German culture. During her work in applied social research and development cooperation, Mirjam’s work focused on qualitative social research, the development of methodological approaches and research design, as well as project management.

Nils Wadt MA

Nils Wadt has been connected to Social Science Works from the very beginning. Nils finished his Bachelor degree in Sociology and Political Science in Cologne and Frankfurt. Both schools are grounded in different research traditions, Frankfurt with a strong background in Critical Theory (Horkheimer & Adorno, Frankfurter Schule) and Cologne with a strong background in empirical research and methodology (René König, Kölner Schule). Nils completed his graduate degree in Social Science at Humboldt University Berlin integrating the different academic backgrounds.

In his Master thesis Nils researched the political motivations and social values of civil volunteers in the refugee sector. His academic profile is leaning towards qualitative methods backed up by general competence in quantitative analysis. His qualitative focus covers methods such as genealogy, content analysis, as well as a variety of interview techniques and participatory observation.

Besides his studies, Nils Wadt worked at Chairs of Sociology, Political Theory, Psychology and Economics, gaining insights into the different research practices and epistemological groundings.

Within his work and studies in the academy, Nils Wadt apprehended the problems, contemporary social science is facing. This includes not only the separation between empirical research practice and the evaluation of its epistemological assumptions, but also the growing irrelevancy of academic research to civil society. His commitment to the project of Social Science Works is grounded in this apprehension.

Paola Perrin de Brichambaut MA

Paola holds a master’s degree in Social Anthropology from the University of Cambridge. Her research examines the impact of urban policy on the human and cultural rights of minority groups. Furthermore, she is interested in the topics of citizenship, migrant and refugee rights, and cultural heritage. Before focusing on Social Anthropology, Paola completed a BA in History of Art at University College London (UCL) and wrote about the intersection of war, psychoanalysis and feminism. She enjoys reading novels and doing pottery in her free time.

Zak Reimer MA

Zak Reimer was a German Chancellor Fellow from the Humboldt Foundation conducting research at Social Science Works into grassroots refugee integration efforts in Germany. More information about his project can be found here.

Zak grew up in the state of Montana, USA and first became interested in the subject of migration after studying the issue at the US/Mexico border in 2016. In 2017, Zak began work with refugees at the newly opened office of the International Rescue Committee in Missoula, Montana. While working to help the community welcome refugees, Zak began asking the questions that led him to pursue his research in partnership with Social Science Works: chiefly, what factors strengthen the role a community plays in integrating refugees and how can successful programs in Germany be replicated in the US?

Zak holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology from Montana State University and a Masters of Social Work from the University of Montana.  His other areas of research interest include childhood development, economic justice, and conflict mediation.

Stavroula Kapsogeorgi

Stavroula studied Political Science at Aristotle University, in Greece. In the context of a Erasmus+ exchange she does an internship at SSW until June 2021. Her main interests have always revolved around Cultural Sociology, Social Movements, Political Communication, Social Policy, and Public Administration. She has volunteered in the Municipality of Thessaloniki in projects on Civil Rights and Social Action. In particular, she helped with creative play for refugee-children. Stavroula likes literature and music, and paints.

Philipp Bautz BA

Philipp studied Public Economics and sociology at the University of Potsdam, as part of a dual-subject bachelor. A wide variety of subjects were at the center of his studies, such as resource and environmental economics, organizational structures, micro economics, statistics and survey design. He is a especially interested in how the economic and ecological spheres influence each other. Also for this reason he wrote a bachelor thesis on the international protection efforts regarding the river Oder, which he approached from a game theory angle. In his spare time he enjoys art, animation, movies, cooking and baking, especially pizza.

Yusril Nurhidayat