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Pieter Vanhuysse

Senior Fellow of Business and Social Sciences
Department of Political Science and Public Management


Pieter Vanhuysse, PhD (LSE) is Full Professor of Politics and Public Policy at SDU's Department of Political Science and Public Management and the Danish Centre for Welfare Studies, where he leads the Societies and Demographic Change research group. Pieter is also Senior Fellow of Business and Social Sciences at D-IAS, the Danish Institute for Advanced Study. He is a founding Board Member of CPOP-SAMF, the Interdisciplinary Centre on Population Dynamics at SDU's Faculty of Business and Social Sciences, and is a member of the Roster of Experts at Population Europe, the network of Europe's leading demographic research centres.

Pieter has published widely in comparative politics and comparative political economy, focusing on public policies, welfare states, democracy in East Central Europe, political demography, intergenerational resource transfers and intergenerational justice (SDGs 4, 10, and 16). He has been awarded a Carlsberg Foundation Monograph Fellowship for 2021-2022 to write a book on sustainable societies and intergenerational justice in public policy.

Impacts: POLICY

Pieter aims to bridge the worlds of ideas and of policy by translating, whenever possible, his research into policy impact. He has spoken and consulted widely to ministries and policymaking communities, including invitations by the Obama White House (private consultation at the Office of Vice President Biden) and European Commission Vice-President for Democracy and Demography Dubravka Suica, as well as addresses to forums including three European Commission Vice-Presidents, a High-Level EU Policy Summit on Responses to Sustainability, the European Environmental and Sustainable Development Advisory Council, an EU Joint Programming Initiative, the Inter-Parliamentary Union at the Canadian Parliament, a Population Europe and Max Planck Society Brussels High-Level Expert Meeting, the Inter-American Conference on Social Security, the IBM International Social Sector Forum, UNICEF, the United Nations Office in Vienna, the Lithuanian parliament, the Slovak Social Ministry, the Austrian ministries of Finance and Social Affairs, and the Global Economic Symposium.

Pieter was part of the Vienna team contracted by the European Commission (DG Employment) and UNECE to construct the first Active Aging Index, which has been adopted wide around the world. Beyond frequent keynotes and addresses to the policy-making community, Pieter has published 18 policy-oriented papers, including for the Global Economic Symposium, the Global South (2), the Bertelsmann Foundation, and the European Social Observatory (3). At SDU, he has hosted official visits of the Ambassadors to Denmark of both Poland and Belgium.


Over 2800 citations, H-index=28, i-10 Index=43 (Google Scholar)

Pieter has (co-)authored 50 publications in international peer-reviewed journals including PLoS ONE, Policy Sciences, J European Public Policy, J Public Policy, Political Research Quarterly, J European Social Policy, J Social Policy, Political Studies, Public Administration and West European Politics, and over 50 chapters, policy briefs and research reports on political sociology and public policy. His book Divide and Pacify: Political Protests and Strategic Social Policies in Post-Communist Democracies (2006) was nominated for the Political Sociology Best Book Award by the American Sociological Association. He has also co-edited Post-Communist Welfare Pathways (2009), Aging Populations in Post-Industrial Democracies (2012) and Global Political Demography: The Politics of Population Change (2021, OA). Two new book manuscripts on sustainable democracies and intergenerational resource transfers are currently in production.

Pieter has held academic keynotes to the International Social Security Association and the European Demography Forum. His research was profiled at ERC Demography, Ethics & Public Policy

Impacts: SOCIAL

Pieter's multiple social science communication contributions to The Conversation UK (5) have attracted 81,000 cumulative readers. Pieter has also written articles for and given interviews to newspapers and media outlets incl. BBC World Service, Belgian, Austrian and Lithuanian TV, The New York Times, Neue Zuercher Zeitung, The National Interest, The Independent, De Standaard (3), World Economic Forum (2), Dansk Politologisk Årbog (4), Der Standard, and Format.

In addition, his research was covered in 180+ press entries incl. by the Washington Post, OECD Insights, Frankfurter Allgemeine, Huffington Post, TAZ, die Welt, multiple times in die Neue Zürcher Zeitung (1 and 2 by  top economist Bruno Frey), die Zeit, die Presse, Handelszeitung, Lithuanian TV, Lithuanian News Agency, Baltic News Service, Austrian TV, Danish radio, Ny Viden (4), Mandagmorgen, Magisterbladet, Nordschleswiger Tageszeitung,, Kristeligt Dagblad, , Weekendavisen and (3).

For more information about Professor Pieter Vanhuysse, please refer to the SDU Portal.


Pieter Vanhuysse