Anne Heyer is an Assistant Professor in modern history with a research interest in the ideas and practices of political participation in different European countries (1800-today). She works on political parties, populism, social movements and democracy in Europe (Germany, Netherlands, Britain and Spain). Her current research projects focus on the changing perception and practices of mass politics in the nineteenth and twentieth century. In addition, she is a research fellow at the German think tank for political participation 'd|part' where she studies current questions of political participation.
Anne Heyer is an Assistant Professor in modern history with a research interest in the ideas and practices of political participation in different European countries (1800-today). She studies the changing perception and practices of mass politics in Germany, Netherlands, Britain and Spain. In addition to the in-depth analysis of primary sources, she uses computational linguistic methods to study large-n digitalized historical corpora. Her monograph 'The Making of the Democratic Party in Europe, 1860- 1890' combines history and social-sciences approaches to explains the emergence of the first parties in a comparative and transnational setting with case studies from Germany, Britain and the Netherlands.
As project leader of the research project ‘De redelijkheid omstreden: Debatregels en de toegang tot de democratie, 1870-1940’ (Contested Reasonability, debating rules and access to democracy, 1870-1940), which received funding of the Thorbecke fund, she is currently studying newcomer parties to explain why parliaments became democratic institutions. She recently also received funding by the Leiden University Fund Snouck Hurgronje for the project ‘Keeping the powerful in check: from small communities to large states'. The historical part of this project focuses on the transnational intellectual debate about the dangers of mass politics and possible political solutions in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. Her publications include political parties, democracy, academic careers, mass media, political attitudes and populism.
Fields of interest
Political participation in Europe (Germany, Netherlands, Britain and Spain) in the period 1800 until today from an interdisciplinary perspective (history and social sciences). Research topics include modern comparative and transnational history, political culture, populism, democracy, political legitimacy, political parties, social movements and digital humanities.
Anne Heyer has studied in Bremen, Tartu and Edinburgh and was a scholarship-holder of the Friedrich-Ebert Stiftung. In 2019 she defended her doctoral dissertation 'The Making of the Democratic Party' at Leiden University as part of the NWO-funded (Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research) research project ‘The Promise of Organization’. Before becoming an Assistant Professor at Leiden University, Anne was a postdoc of the EU Horizon 2020-funded research project TRANSPOP (Juan March Institute, Universidad Carlos III in Madrid) for which she studied nineteenth-century popular politics in Europe with digital humanities methods.
Among other things, Anne Heyer was a founding member, newsletter editor and coordinator of the first international workshop of the Political History PhD Network (PHPN). In addition, Dr. Heyer is a founding member and research fellow at the German think tank for political participation 'd│part' where she studied contemporary challenges of democracy with social science methods. She was the editor of the blog series on populist parties. Her teaching includes European history, political parties, political participation, elections and democracy.
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