CIVICA Research

CIVICA Research: A joint long-term research and innovation strategy

The CIVICA Research project aims at endowing CIVICA - The European University of Social Sciences with the instruments of an ambitious and innovative research strategy. CIVICA Research builds on the complementary strengths of the partners to pursue enhanced cooperation in close synergy with the education dimension of CIVICA.

CIVICA Research received €2m funding from the EU's research and innovation programme Horizon 2020, under the chapter “Science with and for Society.” The activities will be rolled out between 2021 and 2023.

The project will enable researchers within CIVICA to participate in joint scientific activities developed around the four focus areas, by using a wide array of events, infrastructures, and tools, including:

  1. rapid setup of snowball seminars, pilot calls and hackathons that lead to the development of a common research agenda;
  2. innovative mechanisms that facilitate the circulation of scholars and ideas within the alliance and foster the emergence of a CIVICA scientific community as well as exchanges with external scholars;
  3. research infrastructures (e.g online experimental lab) that fully exploit the potential of digital tools for research;
  4. influential knowledge that percolates beyond academic circles, thus establishing joint Open Science standards;
  5. dissemination and communication of research outcomes to targeted audiences.

CIVICA Research will promote gender diversity as one of its foundational values, as it is key to a sustainable ecosystem for research, innovation and education.

The CIVICA Research structure will create an academic network of excellence. Social sciences are imperative to tackling the world’s most pressing issues, and we aim for CIVICA to emerge as world champion of social sciences.


To deepen and strengthen the research and innovation pillar of the alliance, CIVICA Research builds on the structures and activities of CIVICA's research goals under Erasmus+. Fuelled by shared values and complementary expertise, CIVICA Research aims to develop a model of institutional transformation fully integrated with the education strategies from the Erasmus+ CIVICA project and based on the following structural and sustainable actions:

  1. define and implement a shared research agenda with socially-relevant outcomes
  2. develop human capital and academic skills
  3. develop shared research and innovation ecosystems
  4. build an ambitious Open Science action plan
  5. explore joint research infrastructures, synergies and common actions both within and beyond CIVICA

Focus areas

CIVICA Research strives to give voice to social science research that contributes to the understanding of major social, economic and political phenomena, in line with the four key topics that are at the core of the alliance's work:

1. Societies in Transition, Crises of Earth

  • Societal dimensions of the Earth System & sustainability
  • Global Sustainable Development Goals
  • Knowledge and assessment systems regarding the environment and development
  • Urban transformations

2. Challenges to Democracy in the 21st Century

  • Democratic backsliding
  • Reform of democracy; democratic innovation
  • Polarisation
  • Social embeddedness of democracy (inequality)

3. Europe Revisited

  • Multilevel governance of migration
  • Constitutional resilience in the EU
  • EU and the world
  • Green values and green economy in the EU
  • Interdisciplinary approaches in EU-focused social science and humanities research

4. Data-Driven Technologies for the Social Sciences

  • Artificial intelligence and the society
  • Societal changes brought about by digital technologies
  • Using new technologies for the social good
  • Innovative digital methods for social science research

Video: Carsten Q. Schneider (CEU) and Guillaume Plantin (Sciences Po) explain the CIVICA Research strategy

“CIVICA Research is the attempt to create instruments that allow us to implement an ambitious innovative research strategy.”
—Carsten Q. Schneider, Professor in the Political Science Department, CEU

“CIVICA Research is an opportunity to deepen and enrich your relationship with top researchers from all over Europe.”
—Guillaume Plantin, Vice President for Research, Sciences Po

CIVICA Research at a glance


Coming soon

  • hackathons
  • CIVICA Excellence Tours by top international researchers
  • training opportunities for doctoral students
  • multi-site postdoctoral research scheme
  • mobility, exchange and training opportunities for faculty
  • roadmap for Interdisciplinary Lab
  • Open Science strategy
  • common research & innovation tools

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Carsten Schneider photo © CEU
Guillaume Plantin photo © Sciences Po