DKK 3.6 million for research into EU’s handling of coronavirus crisis

Derek Beach has received DKK 3.6 million from the Independent Research Fund Denmark for a project aiming to develop improved case study methods. The cases are based on the EU’s crisis management in relation to the current coronavirus crisis among others.

2020.04.20 | Ingrid Marie Fossum

For a number of years, Derek Beach, professor of political science at Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University, has been studying the EU’s crisis management. He was about to embark on a new project involving a comprehensive case study of how the EU is handling the refugee and the environmental crises, but then the coronavirus crisis arose and soon dominated the entire EU agenda.

This caused Derek Beach to change his focus. Together with his dutch partner Sandrino Smeets from Radboud University in the Netherlands, he is now busy exploring how the EU is handling the coronavirus crisis.

“Right now we have a unique opportunity to collect data in real-time while the crisis is unfolding. To me, this is very exciting,” says Derek Beach, whose project has received DKK 3.6 million from the Independent Research Fund Denmark.

“With the grant, we are able to conduct a more in-depth analysis of how the EU has handled the crisis over an extended period of time. As soon as it is allowed, we hope to visit the EU and talk to government officials face-to-face and not on Skype as we are currently doing,” says Derek Beach.

The study of how the EU is handling the coronavirus crisis builds on knowledge from a recently completed project on how the EU handled former Euro and refugee crises. The researchers are aiming to develop methods that will improve our ability to uncover complicated decision processes in the EU system and in general. In addition, they will attempt to develop the methods in a way that allows for use in a more practice-oriented setting i.e. for policy evaluations. In this connection, the researchers are collaborating with the World Bank and the German Evaluation Institute (DEval).

The project is called Mechanisms and Mechanistic Evidence in the Social Sciences (MMESS) and will run over four years.

Further information:
Derek Beach
Professor of political science at Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University
derek@ps.au.dk
+45 87 16 56 29

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