Awarded Projects - ECRP II

In total, five projects from the EUROCORES ECRP 2006 Competition were funded.  You will find below the abstracts of the projects as well as the lists of Project Leaders, Principal Investigators and Associate Partners.

06_ECRP_FP004 Disaggregating Civil Wars

Abstract: The sheer number of internal conflicts over the past years in regions, such as the Balkans, the Caucasus, and the Great Lakes of Africa, has led to a surge of interest in civil war. In recent years, political economists and quantitative researchers, partly funded by the World Bank, have told us a great deal about the conditions that make countries more likely to experience civil war. However, this does not mean that their results cannot, and should not, be questioned. We challenge some of the key assumptions and findings of the literature, in particular the putative irrelevance of ethnicity as a cause of conflict, the strong emphasis on opportunity structures at the expense of motivations, and the downplaying of transnational mechanisms.
Our project aims to re-examine these claims by uncovering relevant causal mechanisms. We do so by answering the questions about "Who?" and "Why?". A convincing explanation of conflict outcomes has to offer a disaggregated account involving real actors with real motives in their proper social and spatiotemporal context. Disaggregating conflict processes to uncover the key actor constellations driving conflict allows us to address our key research problems. First, it forces us to consider the ethnic identity of the actors involved in the centre-periphery relationship. Second, it demands a more precise understanding of the motivations and grievances of these actors. Third, we need to look beyond the boundaries of the nation-state to capture the transnational character of the actors. Project website:

Project Leader

ETH ZürichGESSCentre for Comparative and International Studies (CIS)ZürichSwitzerland

Principal Investigators

Scott GeoffreyGatesE-Mail
International Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO)Centre for the Study of Civil War (CSCW)OsloNorway
Kristian SkredeGleditschE-Mail
University of EssexDepartment of GovernmentEssexUnited Kingdom

06_ECRP_FP007 Citizens of the future: the concerns and actions of young people around current European and global issues

Abstract: Young people are growing up in a complex and fast changing world where local and national issues are now only comprehensible if set in a wider global context, yet we know little about their interest in such issues or about how prepared they are to engage with democratic processes to bring about change.
This study investigates the concerns of young Europeans (aged 10, 14, 17) for their personal, local and global futures, focussing on issues such as democratic processes, poverty, unemployment, human rights, the environment and conflict. It will identify whether they are optimistic or pessimistic, and whether they are willing to work for change or are uncommitted to social participation.  It examines the extent to which they are pro-social in their engagement with others, committed to acting for a common good.

Poland, Spain and Turkey are countries with different social, cultural, educational, economic and political contexts. The study will illuminate the extent to which these countries have successfully prepared young people for their role in a rapidly changing Europe. The outcomes will inform policy makers and those involved in citizenship education. The applicants have extensive experience of collaborative European projects and will use established networks for dissemination. Project website:

Project Leader

Beata EwaKrzywosz-RynkiewiczE-Mail
University of Warmia and MazuryFaculty of Social ScienceDepartment of PsychologyOlsztynPoland

Principal Investigators

Melinda AnnDoolyE-Mail
Autonomous University of BarcelonaFaculty of Education SciencesCerdanyola del VallèsSpain
Istanbul UniversityFaculty of CommunicationIstanbulTurkey

Associated Partner

London Metropolitan UniversityInstitute for Policy Studies in EducationLondonUnited Kingdom

06_ECRP_FP009 The short and long range dynamics of attention

Abstract: Human attention research forms one of the cores of cognitive neuroscience. It investigates the limitations and selection mechanisms behind the human brain’s information processing capacity. However, most research has focused on what the brain selects and where it directs its attention. Relatively little is known about when certain processes operate; in other words, about the dynamics and time course of attention in response to both a changing environment and changing behavioural goals. Such changes may occur at several different time scales, from automatic processes on the level of milliseconds, to longer range drops in one’s vigilance on the level of minutes to hours. The CRP seeks to provide a comprehensive framework for pan-European investigations into the short and long-range dynamics of attention. These are tackled from different methodological backgrounds, such as accuracy and eye movement measurements, computational modeling, psychopharmacology, neuropsychological assessment and brain imaging techniques. The findings are likely to have important implications for theories of how the brain selects its input, and possibly also for clinical populations such as those suffering from attention disorders as a consequence of parietal brain damage or ADHD. Project website:

Project Leader

Vrije Universiteit AmsterdamFaculty of Psychology and EducationDepartment of Cognitive PsychologyAmsterdamNetherlands

Principal Investigators

Katholieke Universiteit LeuvenDepartment of NeurologyLeuvenBelgium
CNRS CR1Université de ProvenceLaboratoire de Neurobiologie de la CognitionMarseilleFrance
Paderborn UniversityFaculty of Cultural SciencesDepartment of PsychologyPaderbornGermany
Trinity College DublinInstitute of NeuroscienceDepartment of PsychologyDublinIreland
The University of OxfordMedical Science DivisionDept of Experimental PsychologyOxfordUnited Kingdom

Associated Partners

University of CopenhagenDepartment of PsychologyCenter for Visual CognitionCopenhagenDenmark
University of CopenhagenFaculty of Social ScienciesDepartment of PsychologyCenter for Visual CognitionCopenhagenDenmark
University of CopenhagenDepartment of PsychologyCenter for Visual CognitionCopenhagenDenmark

06_ECRP_FP022 Constructing Regional Advantage: Towards State-of-the-Art Regional Innovation System Policies in Europe?

Abstract: Globalisation pressures force European regions to enhance their competitiveness. Regions are considered a key level where innovation processes are shaped, coordinated and governed through localized capabilities. Often competitive advantages do not emerge spontaneously, but are the results of collective actions and initiatives taken by firms, research organizations and governments at various levels. 
Policies for constructing regional advantage cannot be based on one “best practice” model but should reflect the different conditions and problems of the respective regions. These vary between types of Regional Innovation Systems (such as institutionally “thick” or “thin”; networked or fragmented) as well as the dominating knowledge base of local industries (analytical, synthetic, symbolic). So far very little is known about how policies for constructing regional advantage can work in such different settings. The project aims at filling this gap by comparing policy initiatives in different regional, institutional and sectoral settings in seven European countries. 

Project Leader

Bjørn T.AsheimE-Mail
Lund UniversityDepartment of Social and Economic GeographyCIRCLE (Centre for Innovation Research and Competence in the Learning Economy)LundSweden

Principal Investigators

Vienna University of Economics and BusinessInstitute of Regional Development and EnvironmentViennaAustria
Charles UniversityFaculty of ScienceDepartment of Social Gography and Regional DevelopmentPrague 2Czech Republic
University of TampereDepartment of Regional StudiesTampereFinland
University of UtrechtFaculty of GeosciencesDepartment of Economic GeographyUtrechtNetherlands
University of AdgerFaculty of Economics and Social SciencesDepartment of Working Life and InnovationGrimstadNorway
Dokuz Eylul UniversityFaculty of BusinessDepartment of EconomicsBucaTurkey

New CRP-specific brochure to download (pdf)

06_ECRP_FP026 Political Communication Culture in Western Europe – A Comparative Study

Abstract: The objective of the study is to analyze the attitudes, norms, and values that drive the relationship between political elites and the media and thereby detect the underlying patterns of political communication behaviors in seven Western democracies. The orientations of actors in political communication are conceptualized as political communication culture, which in turn is seen as part of the general political culture of a country. While it is a general feature that political communication culture is to be understood as the orientations that guide the interaction between political actors and political journalists, we must note that it is related to country specific national contexts engrained in the political and media systems. By surveying the top 300 members of the political and media elite in each country, the study aims to systematically map out the existing types of political communication cultures in Western Europe and detect similarities and differences across countries. Project website:

Project Leader

Free University BerlinInstitute for Media and Communication StudiesDepartment of Political and Social SciencesBerlinGermany

Principal Investigators

University of InnsbruckInstitut für PolitikwissenschaftDepartment of Political ScienceInnsbruckAustria
Roskilde UniversityDepartment for Society and GlobalisationRoskildeDenmark
University of HelsinkiSwedish School of Social ScienceHelsinkiFinland
JuanDiez MedranoE-Mail
University of BarcelonaFaculty of Economics and Business SciencesDepartment of SociologyBarcelonaSpain
Halmstad UniversitySchool of Social and Health ScienceHalmstadSweden
Universität ZürichInstitut für Publizistikwissenschaft und Medienforschung (IPMZ)ZürichSwitzerland

Associated Partners

University of LjubljanaFaculty of Social SciencesLjubljanaSlovenia
University of LeedsInstitute of Communications StudiesLeedsUnited Kingdom