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ESRA 2021 Candidates

We are pleased to announce the candidates for the 2021-2023 ESRA Committee. The final list of nominated candidates has been agreed by the current ESRA Committee. Elections will be held electronically during the first week of the conference, and will be concluded at the General Assembly on Friday 9th July, 2021. If you are a current member of ESRA, you are eligible to vote. Please take some time to learn more about the colleagues who have been nominated and plan to participate in the election.

Position: President
Candidate: Professor Vera Toepoel, Utrecht University, The Netherlands

Biography: Vera Toepoel is assistant professor at the Department of Methods & Statistics at Utrecht University. She has been the chair of the ESRA21 conference. Her research interests focus on online surveys (from recruitment, design, to weighting), mobile surveys and sensor data. She has written the book “Doing Surveys Online” published by Sage, and has published papers in numerous survey related journals (e.g. Survey Research Methods, Public Opinion Quarterly, Sociological Methods and Research). Vera is president of the Research Committee on Methods & Logistics of the International Sociological Association, and has been the president of the Dutch and Belgian Platform for Survey Research.

Motivation: I have been part of the ESRA committee for two years. In my role as chair for the online conference ESRA21 I have gained a lot of experience for the ESRA committee. I look forward to continue to cooperate with existing board members, as well as welcome new committee members. We will work hard in improving the effectiveness of the ESRA committee, ESRA communication (e.g. website and social media) as well as offering an interesting program to our ESRA members. I am grateful for your trust and look forward to exciting new years.

Joined: July 2019
Position: Vice President
Candidate: Professor Marieke van Gerner-Haan, University of Groningen, The Netherlands

Biography: Marieke is working as an assistant professor at the sociology department of the University of Groningen (the Netherlands). In 2015 she obtained her PhD in survey methodology also at the University of Groningen, and held post-doc positions at VU University Amsterdam and Utrecht University from 2015-2018. Her current work focuses on survey methodology in mixed-device surveys, health surveys, qualitative research methods, and interviewer-respondent interaction analysis.

Motivation: In the past 4 years I have been an active member of the ESRA Board. In these four years I have been mainly involved in organizing ESRA short courses and organizing the biennial conference together with the conference chair. I would like to fulfil the position of vice-president in the next two years. I hope to be able to further professionalize ESRA by focusing on more communication with- and activities for our members in addition to the ESRA conference.

Joined: July 2017
Position: Conference Chair
Candidate: Dr. Vera Lomazzi, GESIS Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences, Germany

Biography: Vera Lomazzi is senior researcher at GESIS Leibniz Institute for Social Sciences in Cologne, where she serves as Head of the Team Survey Data Augmentation at the department of Survey Data Curation. Her substantive research mainly focuses on the cross-cultural study of gender equality and values change. She has a specific interest in the quality of the instruments adopted by large cross-sectional survey programs and their measurement equivalence. She is secretary of the Executive Committee of the European Values Study.

Motivation: ESRA conferences have been always a great source of inspiration for young and experienced survey researchers eager to get in contact with state-of-art studies and increase their professional network. I have been part of the ESRA committee for the last two years, as General Secretary and vice – conference chair of ESRA21. I would like to keep contributing to the development of ESRA as conference chair of ESRA23, offering the opportunity to our community of scholars, data professionals, and survey programmes to meet, engage, and connect.

Joined: July 2019
Position: Vice Conference Chair
Candidate: Dr. Daniel Seddig, University of Cologne, Germany

Biography: I am a sociologist at the University of Cologne. My research interests are human values and attitudes, deviant behavior and crime, attitudes toward immigration, health, and comparative data analysis with structural equation modeling. I am currently leading a research project on COVID19 vaccination intentions, social disparities, and institutional trust in Germany and work as Associate Editor for the Survey Research Methods journal and the European Journal of Criminology.

Motivation: I joined ESRA because I am interested in the many facets of survey research that are relevant for my empirical work, such as recruitment, data collection and analysis, measurement, and comparability of measures across cultures and time. I am interested in taking a committee role in ESRA as Vice Conference Chair because I would like to contribute to organizing the exciting and inspiring conferences, get a feeling of the “inner workings“ of the association, and meet many valued colleagues.
Position: General Secretary
Candidate: Dr. Alessandra Gaia, University of Milano-Bicocca, Italy

Biography: I am a Research Fellow at the Department of Sociology and Social Research, University of Milano-Bicocca. My research interests include the study of non-response in social surveys, the use of new technologies for data collection, and research methods to survey hard-to-reach populations.

Motivation: Since I joined in 2013 I always highly regarded the role ESRA has in promoting links between survey researchers and survey methodologists and in promoting the quality of survey research in Europe and beyond. I am applying to serve as General Secretary with the aim of contributing to the effective management of the association’s activities for many years to come.
Position: Committee Member (Finances)
Candidate: Professor Rory Fitzgerald, City, University of London, UK

Biography: Rory Fitzgerald is Director of the European Social Survey (ESS) and Professor of Practice in Survey Research at City, University of London where he was awarded his PhD in Sociology. Rory directs the ESS which is one of the largest social science research infrastructures in the world with over 160,000 registered users of its data and over 5500 publications. He has published on many areas of cross-national survey methods including questionnaire design, pre-testing, non-response and comparative web panels.

Motivation: I firmly believe that ESRA is a much needed and effective forum for bringing together survey researchers across Europe. With a strong academic as well as practioner focus and including the leading Survey Research Methods journal, ESRA provides a wonderful forum for sharing new ideas and best practice in the ever changing world of survey research. I hope that I can contribute to the financial organisation of ESRA to ensure it can continue to flourish as the leading organisation for survey researchers in Europe. Through my work on the ESS I have good knowledge of issues related to cross-national financial organisation including on the thorny issue of VAT!
Position: Committee member (Communications)
Candidate: Dr. Alexander Wenz, University of Mannheim, Germany
Personal website

Biography: I am a Postdoctoral Researcher in the School of Social Sciences at the University of Mannheim. I received my PhD in Survey Methodology from the University of Essex in 2018. In my current research, I examine the quality of novel methods of data collection, focusing on (mobile) web surveys, passive measurement with smartphone apps and wearable sensors, and linkage of survey and digital behavioral data. Furthermore, I teach at the University of Mannheim and at the International Program in Survey and Data Science.

Motivation: Since the first ESRA conference that I attended in Reykjavik in 2015, I have valued the conference and the ESRA community as a great place to share my research and learn about the latest research, exchange ideas with survey researchers from different countries and disciplines, and meet new and old friends. Now, I would be happy to support the association and would like to apply for the position of Committee Member. In particular, I would be interested in contributing to the Communications subcommittee by maintaining the ESRA website as the front page of the association.
Position: Committee member (Education)
Candidate: Dr. Olga Maslovskaya, University of Southampton, UK

Biography: Dr Olga Maslovskaya is an Assistant Professor in Social Statistics and Demography at the University of Southampton. Olga’s primary research interests are in the field of survey research and survey methodology. She is currently the Principal Investigator (PI) of a ESRC-funded research project entitled “Transitioning from Interviewer-Administered Surveys to Online Data Collection: Experiences, Challenges and Opportunities (GenPopWeb 2 Network)” and prior to this she was a PI of a 24-month ESRC-funded Secondary Data Analysis Initiative research project entitled “Understanding survey response behaviour in a digital age: Mixed-device online surveys and mobile device use”. Prior to becoming an Assistant Professor, she was a Senior Research Fellow at the National Centre for Research Methods (NCRM) at the University of Southampton, where she gained lots of experience of organising short courses.

Motivation: ESRA conference is my most favourite conference in the field. I would be very excited to contribute to the ESRA committee and to the organisation of the very important conference in the field of survey research. My previous experience of organising short courses within NCRM and also my experience of working as a Teaching Fellow for Courses in Applied Social Surveys (CASS) programme and teaching many short course over time myself will help me to contribute effectively to this role.
Position: Committee Member (TBD)
Candidate: Dr. Michael Bergmann, Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy, Munich, Germany

Biography: Michael Bergmann is a senior researcher at the Technical University of Munich and the Munich Center for the Economics of Aging at the Max Planck institute for Social Law and Social Policy. He is head of the survey methodology unit of the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE), a research infrastructure for studying the effects of health, social, economic, and environmental policies over the life-course of citizens from 28 European countries and Israel. His research interests focus on survey methodology, esp. data quality in longitudinal/cross-national studies. His recent research projects include analysing the impact of different interview modes on data quality in panel studies and the consequences of COVID-19 for (in)formal care and support.

Motivation: Communication and exchange between researchers was and especially in these days is the key to improve the quality of research. For me personally, ESRA always constituted exactly this: Discussing ways to improve survey research! I therefore want to play a part in contributing to this within the ESRA committee and especially strengthen the use of proper methods to stimulate substantial research findings.
Position: Committee Member (TBD)
Candidate: Dr. René Bautista, NORC, USA

Biography: Rene Bautista, Ph.D, is a Principal Research Scientist in the Methodology and Quantitative Social Sciences department at NORC at the University of Chicago. He has been affiliate with NORC for more than 10 years. He currently serves as co-Principal Investigator and Director of the General Social Survey (GSS) in the United States. Bautista has substantial experience with survey research designs, qualitative work, and advanced statistical analysis. Bautista ha previously served as Executive Councilor (chairing the Standards Committee) of the American Association for Public Opinion Research. Bautista recently served as Associate Editor of Public Opinion Quarterly. He teaches courses on data collection and survey questionnaire design at the Irving B. Harris Graduate School of Public Policy Studies at the University of Chicago. He holds a Ph.D. in Survey Research and Methodology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Motivation: Over the past two decades, I’ve been involved in all aspects of the survey life cycle (discussion of objectives, planning, funding, budgeting, data collection, sampling, editing, weighting, and reporting of findings to various audiences). My professional experience —including my current affiliation with one of the largest independent social research organizations in the United States (NORC)— has provided me with an excellent understanding of key aspects of the survey research process: participants’ concerns, needs of private and government clients, independent sponsors, the public, the media, and academics. I have a deep understanding of both theoretical and practical aspects of public opinion and survey research including discussions on mode of data collection. I constantly interact with the scientific community through international conferences such as ESRA and appreciate the role that organizations play in our field. ESRA has been increasing becoming a major association that promotes the exchange of scientific knowledge, fosters the inclusion of various research cultures, and generate dynamics for innovative ideas. I look forward to contributing to ESRA as it continues to grow as an influential survey research organization.
Position: Committee Member (TBD)
Candidate: Mr. Daniil Lebedev, HSE University, Russia

Biography: Daniil Lebedev is faculty member at the Department of Sociological Research Methods at National research university Higher school of economics (HSE University). He is also research assistant at the International Laboratory for Social Integration Research and is now in his second year of PhD at HSE University developing his work on using paradata to measure and improve data quality in web surveys. His research interests focus on web survey methodology (survey design, paradata, Total Survey Error, sensors and app data, data quality).

Motivation: I much appreciate the work that has already been done by ESRA committee as it successfully brings together and supports communication between survey methodologists with various background and levels of expertise. With this ESRA fosters the development of the methodological and adjacent research fields. In case of joining ESRA committee I plan on using my perspective to help with organizing courses or other events in order to help starting methodologists including MA and PhD students to be more included in the academic interaction with more experienced colleagues as well as be helpful in organizing communication among all ESRA members.