About us

About us

Established in 2015                                      Current members: 210

Political concepts have a key role in and for political science: they serve in describing, interpreting, analyzing, explaining, and understanding its research objects. Concepts, first, serve as analytical categories. But it is a key insight of conceptual history that political concepts are not stable, they do not have fixed meanings.  Rather, they are themselves controversial and contested in their meanings, normative colour or tone. Conceptual changes often relate to political processes themselves. Thus, concepts are pivots, factors and indicators for political and social changes.

This new Standing Group focuses on the role of political concepts in political science in all possible respects, namely in their function both as analytical categories and as objects of political controversies. Such an approach is important for nearly all the sub-disciplines of political science. The Standing Group is therefore open to scholars from all sub-disciplines sharing a focal interest in the role of political concepts.

Aims & Objectives

The primary aim is to create a network and a stable setting for Conceptual Research within the framework of ECPR. This group connects a broad network of scholars whose work is related to the role of political concepts and/or the issues of conceptual change. It also serves as a forum for intellectual exchange between researchers from all political science sub-disciplines and neighboring disciplines, such as history and cultural studies.


– Maintaining a website with general information on the SG and regular updates on its activities.

– Keeping members in touch and distributing relevant info (CfP, Jobs, Publications) through a bi-monthly Newsletter and mailing list.

– Organizing or supporting sections/panels/workshops at ECPR, IPSA and other large international events.

– Organizing independent international workshops and conferences.

– Encouraging and facilitating joint project applications and publication activities.

– Contributing to research trainings and summer schools in the field of political concepts, in cooperation with the existing History of Concepts Group and the CONCEPTA doctoral school