Universiteit Leiden

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Femke Bakker

Senior assistant professor

Dr. F.E. Bakker
+31 71 527 6188

Femke E. Bakker is Senior Assistant Professor at the Institute of Political Science.

More information about Femke Bakker

Femke E. Bakker studies politics and international relations from a political-psychological perspective. Her research interests include the microfoundations of democratic peace theory, political leadership, belief systems, stress-management for crisis decision-makers, and the impact of meditation on political behaviour. She teaches in the fields of political psychology, international relations and research methods.

Currently, Bakker is working on two research projects. Can Lovingkindness Meditation Support Tolerant Political Behavior, supported by the Mind and Life Institute’s PEACE grant, studies the impact of meditation on political behavior. With dr. Niels van Willigen, Bakker investigates if and how the personal beliefs of political leaders can potentially influence (foreign) policy outcomes.

Bakker is also an associate researcher of the Laboratory of Comparative and Social Research (LCSR) and serves as book reviews editor for Acta Politica.

Dr. Bakker studied political science at Leiden University, obtaining her Research Master degree (cum laude) in 2012 and her PhD in 2018. Her PhD thesis, written under supervision of Prof. dr. Petr Kopecký, dr. Niels van Willigen and dr. Michael Meffert tested the microfoundations of democratic peace theory. Her dissertation was awarded with the ECPR Jean Blondel Prize and received an Honorable Mention by the ISPP.

Curriculum vitae Femke Bakker

PhD supervision

Femke Bakker is available to supervise PhD students and invites PhD research proposals in the areas of:

  • Microfoundations of International Relations
  • Beliefs and (foreign policy) decision-making
  • Democratic Peace Theory

See for more information on PhD positions:

Institute of Political Science: PhD

Senior assistant professor

  • Faculteit der Sociale Wetenschappen
  • Instituut Politieke Wetenschap

Work address

Pieter de la Court
Wassenaarseweg 52
2333 AK Leiden
Room number 5B25




  • Lila Meditation Eigenaar Lila Meditation (meditatietraining en coaching)
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