Josef Lolacher

Lincoln College
DPhil Politics

Josef Lolacher is a second-year MPhil student in European Politics and Society at Harris Manchester College, University of Oxford. Josef's research interests include the effects of populism on liberal democracy, the state of democracy and the rule of law in the European Union, as well as the performance of populist parties in power. In his MPhil thesis, he investigates whether populist parties differ from non-populist parties in their pledge fulfilment.

Alongside his studies, he is currently working as Project Researcher for "Europe in a Changing World", a major research collaboration between the Dahrendorf Programme at the European Studies Centre, University of Oxford and eight other leading institutions of higher learning in continental Europe, China, India, Turkey, Russia and the United States. Previously, he worked as Research Assistant for "Europe's Stories" and co-authored a chapter on “Democracy in the EU" in the report “Young Europeans Speak to EU” edited by Prof Garton Ash, outlining what young Europeans want the EU to be and do in the future.

Before coming to Oxford, Josef Lolacher studied Political Science and Psychology at LMU Munich and worked at the Chair of International Relations at the Geschwister-Scholl-Institute for Political Science in Munich and for the "Public Responsibility Attribution in the EU" research group. Moreover, he has interned at the Consulate General of the Federal Republic of Germany in New York and volunteered at the Munich Security Conference 2020.


  • 2021: Fellow, “German Academic Exchange Service” (DAAD) - monthly stipend and contribution to tuition fees 

  • 2021: Fellow, “Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes” - monthly stipend and contribution to tuition fees 

  • 2020: Fellow, “Friedrich-Ebert Stiftung” (German scholarship foundation)

  • 2020: Fellow, “Max Weber-Program of Bavaria” (part of the Elite Network Bavaria)



  • Lolacher, Josef and Vériter, Sophie (2021): “Democracy“, in: Timothy Garton Ash (ed.), Young Europeans Speak to EU (pp. 65-82), Dahrendorf Programme at the European Studies Centre, University of Oxford.