Since ten years I have been working on the topics of deliberation and democracy. Born in Bern (Switzerland), I have studied history, political science, and media sciences at the University of Bern and at the University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill). The title of my PhD was “The Real World of Deliberation. A Comparative Study of Its Favorable Conditions in Legislatures”, which I completed at the University of Bern in 2004. In 2010, my habilitation thesis on the topic "Democracy and democratization in advanced countries, less developed countries, and at the global scale" was accepted by the “WISO-Fakultät” at the University of Bern.
In 2003 I was a research scholar at the University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill), followed by a Swiss Chair/Jean Monnet fellowship at the European University Institute (Florence) in 2004. From 2005 to 2010, I worked as a senior assistant at the Institute of Political Science at the University of Bern. After a research visit at the Research School of Social Sciences ("RSSS") at the Australian National University (Canberra) in 2009, I was a visiting professor ("Vertretungsprofessur") at the University of Konstanz.
Since August 2010 I am SNF research professor ("Förderprofessur") at the Institute of Political Science at the University of Lucerne. The title of my SNF-sponsored project is "Deliberative Reforms in the Political System", which explores the potentials for a deliberative renewal of current politics as well optimal forms of deliberation.
Currently, I am also "Speaker" of the "Arbeitskreis Handlungs- und Entscheidungstheorie" of the German Association of Political Science (DVPW), Member of the ECPR Steering Committee of Standing Group on "Democratic Innovations", organizer of the Study Group "Micro and Macro Dynamics of Deliberation” at the Hanse Wissenschaftskolleg (HWK), member of the HWK Study Group on "Dynamics of collective decisions", and member of the APSA task force “Getting to ‘Yes’ in Politics.