Philip Leifeld


I am a political scientist with a dual affiliation at Eawag (the water research institute of ETH domain in Zurich) and the University of Bern, Institute of Political Science. At these institutes, I am a senior researcher and member of the Policy Analysis and Environmental Governance (PEGO) group.

My previous affiliations include the University of Konstanz (Zukunftskolleg and Department of Politics and Public Administration), the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods, and the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research.

My research is mainly about political networks. I have published extensively on environmental policy networks, policy debates, and network methodology. In particular, I have analyzed information exchange, reputation formation, and the role of policy forums in policy networks.

With regard to political methodology, I have developed and implemented new techniques for inferential network analysis, including dynamic extensions of the exponential random graph model (ERGM). I am the author of several software packages, including the Java-based qualitative text analysis package Discourse Network Analyzer (DNA), an R package for inferential network analysis called xergm, and texreg, a widely used R package for the presentation of statistical model output.

I regularly teach in the POLNET summer or fall workshops in Konstanz and the ECPR Winter School for Methods and Techniques in Bamberg. Both are open to external participants. In 2015, I also taught courses on inferential network analysis at the MA and PhD level at the University of Innsbruck, Zeppelin University, the University of Konstanz, and the University of Bern.

Please take a look at my publications, teaching and software pages to learn more.

Recent activities

DNA 2.0 beta 4 online

[2016-03-24] A new beta version of the Discourse Network Analyzer is online. DNA 2.0 beta 4 is a pre-release, and updates will follow periodically. DNA is a content analysis software with network export functions for actor-based analysis of policy debates. More information here.

texreg and xergm updates on CRAN

[2016-02-25] New versions of my R packages texreg, btergm, and xergm are available on CRAN. texreg produces regression tables, btergm fits temporal exponential random graph models (TERGM), and xergm is a meta-package for extensions of exponential random graph models.