Let me introduce myself
I am a social worker turned social scientist, currently working as a Postdoctoral Researcher at the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences of Tilburg University (the Netherlands) and the Centre for Sociological Research of KU Leuven (Belgium). My main research interest and expertise lies in studying popular attitudes towards differently targeted and differently organized welfare state policies.
Areas of expertise
There is no denying that the benefits and services provided by social welfare states -such as childcare, unemployment benefits and old-age pensions- play a pivotal role in our everyday lives. That is why I have always found it massively intriguing and important to try and understand the ins and outs of the welfare state, especially at present, when rising inequality, transforming labor markets, migration and other demographic developments exert additional pressures on welfare states and raise important questions about their future directions.
The focus of my research is on the social legitimacy of the welfare state, understood as the support for different social benefits and services among the general public. Who supports what parts of the welfare state, and why? Being a firm believer in the mixed-method approach, I use both quantitative data such as (cross-national) surveys and qualitative data such as focus groups and in-depth interviews to measure public opinion towards the welfare state.
As a PhD researcher, I focused on popular deservingness opinions and their interaction with welfare policies. Which target groups are considered deserving of social welfare, and how are such opinions related to the design characteristics of existing policies? The main argument is that there is a reciprocal relationship between welfare deservingness and welfare policy. While deservingness opinions affect, through various mechanisms of policy responsiveness, how welfare policies are designed and implemented, welfare policies in turn influence popular notions of deservingness through various mechanisms of policy feedback.
My main focus as a postdoctoral researcher is on studying the social legitimacy of different institutional designs of welfare policies. Should benefits and services be universally accessible to all, selectively targeted at the poor only, or somewhere in-between? By scrutinizing under which circumstances -when, where and why- some policy design options are more popular than others, I aim to make a considerable contribution to the academic literature and political debates regarding universal vis-à-vis selective welfare provision.
The Popularity of Basic Income. Evidence from the Polls. Palgrave Macmillan.
Wie steunt welk type basisinkomen? Een analyse op basis van de ‘Basisinkomen in Nederland’ survey. Tilburg University: Departement Sociologie.
New Horizons in Welfare Attitudes Research. A Research Agenda for Public Attitudes to Welfare. Edward Elgar Publishing.
Organization of a panel session at the Annual FISS Conference: Stress-testing basic income. Empirical research on the impact and feasibility of basic income.
Presentation at the Basic Income Guarantee (BIG) Conference: How popular is basic income? Evidence from the polls.
Organization of a conference stream @ the Annual ESPAnet conference: New horizons in welfare attitudes research.
Paper presentation @ the IPSA World Congress of Political Science: The multidimensionality of public support for basic income. A vignette experiment.
Paper presentation at the SPA Annual Conference: A wave of support? A natural experiment on how the Covid-19 pandemic affected the popularity of a basic income.
Organization of the Annual Inspiration Day in Social Work and Social Policy: Non-take-up of social rights.
Paper presentation @ the ISA RC19 Conference: How popular deservingness perceptions mediate the link between unemployment policies and their public support.
Paper presentation @ the Annual FISS Conference: Twenty years after Korpi and Palme’s “paradox of redistribution”. What have we learned so far, and where should we take it from here?
Paper presentation @ the DaWS Early Career Workshop: Welfare deservingness and welfare policy. New perspectives on popular deservingness opinions and their interaction with welfare state policies.
Organization of a paper session @ the 4the International ESS Conference: Welfare state legitimacy in times of crisis and austerity: between continuity and change.
Organization of the international research seminar: The Social Legitimacy of Basic Income.
Paper presentation @ the Annual ESPAnet Conference: Why deservingness theory needs qualitative research. Comparing focus group discussions on social welfare in three welfare regimes.
Paper presentation @ the ECPR General Conference: Retrenchment of unemployment protection and the absence of public resistance in Denmark and the Netherlands. The role of popular deservingness perceptions among welfare constituents.
Paper presentation @ the Norface Welfare State Futures Workshop: Public support for the social rights and social obligations of the unemployed: two sides of the same coin?
Paper presentation @ the Annual ESPAnet Conference. Disentangling the Dutch enigma: the interplay between institutional design, popular perceptions and the social legitimacy of targeted welfare.
Organization of the authors’ meeting for the edited book: The Social Legitimacy of Targeted Welfare. Attitudes to Welfare Deservingness.
Parkstraat 45 – box 3601
3000 Leuven, Belgium.
+32 16 37 44 23