Urban Studies | Public Policy

Welcome. I am a political scientist who is currently working as a Postdoctoral Researcher at the KPM Center for Public Management, University of Bern in Switzerland. I am specialized in public policy with a focus on urban studies and migration studies.

I am the author of the book Varieties of Capital Cities (2018, Edward Elgar) and the co-author of the book The Political Economy of Capital Cities (2018, Routledge). My work has been published in journals such as Governance, Public Administration Review, Regional Studies, and Urban Studies. 

I recieved the Carl-Goerdeler-Preis for the best Ph.D thesis about local politics and administration in business and social sciences, the Susan Clarke Young Scholars’ Award awarded by the APSA section “Urban and Local Politics” and the Best Comparative Policy Paper Award (together with Prof. Dr. Fritz Sager) awarded by the journal JCPA and the „IPSA Committee on Local Governments and Politics”.

*** I will be at the Unviversity of Toronto, School of Cities in June and July 2019 ***

For more information:

 

Kaufmann, David. 2018. Varieties of Capital Cities: The Competitiveness Challenge for Secondary Capital Cities. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.
Published in the Cities series.

„This volume constitutes a major contribution to the study of comparative urban economic development and public policy.“
– Paul Kantor, Fordham University, US

Mayer, Heike, Fritz Sager, David Kaufmann and Martin Warland. 2018. The Political Economy of Capital Cities. London: Routledge.
Published in the Regions and Cities series.

Special issues

Kaufmann, David and Mara Sidney. “Towards an urban policy analysis: Linking urban politics and public policy”, PS: Political Science & Politics.
Accepted Symposium

Journal articles (double-blind peer review)

Kaufmann, David and Stefan Wittwer. 2019. Business centre or bedroom community? The development of employment in small and medium-sized towns, Regional Studies. Early Online.

Kaufmann, David. 2019. Comparing Urban Citizenship, Sanctuary Cities, Local Bureaucratic Membership, and Regularizations, Public Administration Review. 79( 3): 443–446.

Kaufmann, David. 2019. Capital cities in interurban competition: Local autonomy, urban governance and locational-policy making, Urban Affairs Review. Early Online.
Blog post in Urban Affairs Forum

Kaufmann, David and Fritz Sager. 2019. How to organize secondary capital city regions: Institutional drivers of locational policy coordination, Governance. 32(1): 63–81.
Winner of the Best Comparative Policy Paper Award (JCPA and ICPA)

Kaufmann, David and Rahel Meili. 2019. Leaves in the wind? Local policies of small and medium- sized towns in metropolitan regions, European Planning Studies. 27(1), 21-41.

Bernhard, Laurent and David Kaufmann. 2018. Coping with the asylum challenge: Tightening and streamlining policies in Western Europe, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies. 44(15): 2506–2523.

Kaufmann, David and Tobias Arnold. 2018. Strategies of cities in globalized interurban competition: the locational policies framework, Urban Studies 55: 2703–2720.
Blog post in Urban Studies Blog

Kaufmann, David, Martin Warland, Heike Mayer and Fritz Sager. 2016. Bern’s positioning strategy: Escaping the fate of a secondary capital city?, Cities 53: 206–215

Mayer, Heike, Fritz Sager, David Kaufmann and Martin Warland. 2016. Capital city dynamics: Linking regional innovation systems, locational policies and policy regimes, Cities 51: 11–20.


 

Research Agendas

I apply a public policy lens on urban studies and migration studies. Public policy analyzes governmental interventions that aim at solving societal problems. I focus on governance arrangements, conceptual policy frameworks, and on the processes behind the formulation and implementation of urban and migration policies.

Towards an urban policy analysis

This conceptual research agenda brings the subdisciplines of urban politics and public policy in dialogue with one another. The urban studies literature is fruitful because it conceptualizes ‘the urban’ as a dense, complex, and fast-changing political arena with a diverse set of actors that want to enter into the urban policy-making process. The public policy literature offers a procedural and more realistic view of policy-making. I propose that an urban policy analysis should examine how urban policies are created, formulated and implemented in complex and multilevel urban environments.
– I cooperate with Mara Sidney (Rutgers University) for this research.

Locational policies

Globalized interurban competition affects cities of various sizes and cities in various locations. Cities try to find ways to position themselves in global markets by formulating locational policies. Locational policies aim to enhance the economic competitiveness of the targeted locality by identifying, developing, and exploiting place-specific assets. To capture the wide range of locational policies, I developed a conceptual framework of locational policies that is interdisciplinarily informed by theories of economic geography and political science Empirically, I study locational policies in capital cities, in small and medium-sized cities as well as in small and medium-sized towns.
– I cooperate with Heike Mayer, Fritz Sager, Rahel Meili, and Stefan Wittwer (all University of Bern) for this research.

Sanctuary cities

Irregular migrants tend to live in dense urban settings. City governments feel a certain immediacy to support, protect and regularize irregular migrants because they irregular migrants are perceived as regular participants in the everyday life of their communities and not as abstract illegal constructs. Thus, irregular migrants have become an urban policy target group. Cities engage in the formulation and implementation of a variety of migration and citizenship policies in support of irregular migrants such as urban citizenship, sanctuary city practices, local bureaucratic membership, and regularizations. I study these urban immigration and citizenship policies mainly in European cities.

Asylum policies

Asylum policies have become salient in Europe. From the wars in the former Yugoslavia in the 1990s to the so-called 2015 ‘refugee crisis’, humanitarian tragedies in Europe’s neighborhoods have repeatedly sparked political divisions between European states and intense and emotionally charged public debates. Volatile numbers of refugee arrivals have highlighted the persistent malfunctioning and shortcomings of EU national asylum policy. This research agenda studies policy developments in the EU as well as on the national level. I study the difficulties of advancing the Common European Asylum System and its important Dublin Regulation. Furthermore, I examine national asylum policy developments in Switzerland and policy narratives in the Swiss direct democratic context.
– I cooperate with Laurent Bernhard (FORS, University of Lausanne), Philipp Lutz (University of Bern), and Anna Stünzi (ETH Zürich) for this research.


 

Teaching

  • FS2019: “Policy-Analysis II”, lecture for M.A. students
  • SS2019: “Migration policies”, seminar for M.A. students
  • SS2018: “Urban politics, urban policies, and metropolitan governance”, seminar for M.A. students
  • SS2017: “Urban politics, urban policies, and metropolitan governance”, seminar for M.A. students, together with Prof. Dr. Fritz Sager and Stefan Wittwer
  • SS2016: “Urban policies and metropolitan governance”, seminar for M.A. students, together with Prof. Dr. Fritz Sager
  • SS2014: “Urban politics and metropolitan governance”, seminar for M.A. students, together with Prof. Dr. Fritz Sager

Research Grants & Policy Advice

I received and conducted a variety of third party funded research grants and research projects.

  • Swiss National Science Foundation 2016-2019, Urban prosperity beyond the metropolis: Analyzing small and medium-sized towns in Switzerland, grant number 159324.
  • Swiss National Science Foundation 2013-2016: Capital City Dynamics: A Comparative Analysis of Innovation and Positioning of Secondary Capital City Regions, grant number 143784.
  • Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs 2016- today: Task within the recruitment procedure for Swiss Diplomates (Concours)
  • Municpality Wohlen bei Bern 2018: “Überprüfung und Anpassung der Verwaltungsstrukturen der Gemeinde Wohlen bei Bern”
  • Swiss Science and Innovation Council 2017: “Wirkungsprüfung SystemsX.ch und die Dateninfrastruktur”
  • Association Bern NEU Gründen 2017: “Verwaltungsorganisation und politische Partizipation in einer fusionierten Grossstadt Bern”
  • Swiss Federal Office of Public Health 2013: “Drug shortages in Switzerland: A literature review”

Bio & CV

Short Bio

David Kaufmann is a political scientist currently working as a Postdoctoral Researcher at the KPM Center for Public Management, University of Bern, Switzerland. He is specialized in public policy with a focus on urban studies and migration studies.

David Kaufmann is the author of Varieties of Capital Cities (2018, Edward Elgar) and co-author of the book The Political Economy of Capital Cities (2018, Routledge). His work has been published in leading international journals such as Governance, Public Administration Review, Regional Studies, and Urban Studies. 

David Kaufmann received  the Carl-Goerdeler-Preis for the best Ph.D thesis about local politics or local administration in business and social sciences in German-speaking countries, the Susan Clarke Young Scholars’ Award awarded by the APSA section “Urban and Local Politics” and the Best Comparative Policy Paper Award (together with Prof. Dr. Fritz Sager) awarded by the journal JCPA and the „IPSA Research Committee on Comparative Studies on Local Governments and Politics”.

Find my full CV here.

Academic positions
  • 2017 – present: University of Bern, Postdoctoral Researcher
    • 06-07/2019: University of Toronto, School of Cities, Visiting Fellowship
  • 2013-2016: University of Bern, Research and Teaching Assistant
    • 03-05/2015: Ottawa University, Guest Researcher
    • 12/2014-02/2015: Virginia Tech, Guest Researcher
    • 09-11/2014: Leiden University, Guest Researcher
Education
  • 2016: Ph.D. University of Bern
  • 2012: M.A. University of Zürich
  • 2010: B.A. University of Zürich
    • 2008-2009: University of Lund, Erasmus exchange year (two terms)
  • 2006: Higher education entrance qualification for adults (Passarelle)
  • 2004: Commercial Apprenticeship with Professional Maturity
Awards
  • 2018: Kommunalwissenschaftlicher Preis der Carl und Anneliese Goerdeler-Stiftung, best Ph.D. thesis about local governance or local administration in business and social sciences in German-speaking countries.
  • 2017: Susan Clarke Young Scholars’ Award, awarded by the American Political Science Association section “Urban and Local Politics”.
  • 2017: Best Comparative Policy Paper Award (together with Prof. Dr. Fritz Sager), awarded by the “Journal of Comparative Policy Analysis” and the “International Political Science Association Research Committee on Comparative Studies on Local Governments and Politics”.

Contact

Dr. David Kaufmann
University of Bern
KPM Center for Public Management
Schanzeneckstrasse 1/ P.O.Box 
CH-3001 Bern, Switzerland
phone +41 31 631 5991
david.kaufmann@kpm.unibe.ch

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