Universität Bonn

Forum Internationale Wissenschaft

Dr. Anna L. Ahlers

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Dr. Anna L. Ahlers

Associate Fellow, Department for Comparative Research on Democracies

Max Planck Institute for the History of Science

Boltzmannstr. 22

14195 Berlin

research group leader 
Lise Meitner Research Group „China in the Global System of Science“

Anna Lisa Ahlers (*1982) studied sinology and political science in Tübingen and Beijing. Her master thesis (2007) dealt with local governance reforms in rural China, taking direct village elections as an example. After graduating, she first worked as Greater China Assistant to the CEO in a strategy consultancy bureau in Frankfurt before returning to Tübingen University in 2008 to take part in a research project on “Local County and Township Cadres as a Strategic Group in the Transformation of Rural China” (led by Prof. Dr. Thomas Heberer und Prof. Dr. Gunter Schubert). At the same time, she also held a position as research fellow and junior lecturer at Tübingen University’s Chair of Greater China Studies. After spending one year at Academia Sinica’s Institute of Political Science (IPSAS) in Taiwan, she defended her Ph.D. dissertation on Constructing a New Socialist Countryside in Contemporary China – Analyzing Policy Implementation in Four Counties” in February 2013.
Anna was a postdoctoral fellow at FIW’s Department of Comparative Research on Democracies in 2013, where she pursued research on “Authoritarian Inclusion?!” and, in collaboration with the other members of the department, prepared the book project Democratic and Authoritarian Political Systems in 21st Century World Society – Vol. 1 & 2. She then briefly worked as deputy director of the research group “Domestic politics” at the Mercator Institute for China Studies (Merics) in Berlin, before accepting a position as associate professor (tenured) in “Modern Chinese Society and Politics” at the University of Oslo in May 2014. Since January 2020, Anna is back in Berlin and leads the Lise Meitner research group “China in the Global System of Science” at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science (MPIWG). The group explores the many facets of China’s stunning ascent in the system of science in recent decades, with a special focus on the current political regime as an environmental factor for science in the PR China, and the interactions of scientific standards and practices with societal values and ethical principles in China, in academic collaboration, and in world science.
Anna Ahlers is still affiliated with the research of the Department of Comparative Research on Democracies at FIW. Together with Rudolf Stichweh she has recently started the „Merton Project: Science and Political Regimes in the 21st Century“. She is a member of the Junge Akademie and will be a fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin in 2020/21. 
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