Dr. Christian Schafferer

Associate Professor

Department of International Trade

Overseas Chinese University

Taichung, Taiwan

E-Mail: chris[at]fule.at

Previous Employment

Department of Political Science, Leopold Franzens University of Innsbruck, Austria.

Visiting Professorships


Institute of Social and Societal Policy, University of Linz, Austria.

Center for Mongol Studies, National University of Mongolia, Mongolia.

Department of Political Science, Meiji University, Japan


[February 2024]

New publication: The Influence of Social Media Marketing on Voting Intention in Indonesia, Journal of Political Marketing.

[November 2023]

Participant, private screening of Black Bauhinia with Malte Kaeding and Lin Fei-fan at Wonderful Theater, Taipei.

[June 2023]

Presenter, Annual Conference, Asian Political and International Studies Association (APISA), Bali, Indonesia.

[December 2022]

Presenter, Annual Conference, Asian Political and International Studies Association (APISA), Chiang Mai University.

[November 2022]

Presenter, 14th Annual Convention Korean International Studies Association (KISA), Yonsei Institute for North Korean Studies.

[June 2022]

Presenter, 2nd Asian Summer School on Political Parties and Democracy, Konrad Adenauer Foundation, University of Nottingham (Malaysia), and OSCE (Academy Bishkek)

[November  2021]

Presenter, 13th Annual Convention Korean International Studies Association (KISA) & 15th Congress Asian Political and International Studies Association (APISA)

[October  2021]

Presenter, XXXIV Annual Congress, Mexican International Studies Association (MISA)

[September  2021]

Presenter, 1st Asian Summer School on Political Parties and Democracy, Konrad Adenauer Foundation, University of Nottingham (Malaysia), and OSCE (Academy Bishkek)

[August  2021]

New Publication:

A production economic analysis of different stocking density and fry size combinations of milkfish, Chanos chanos, farming in Taiwan (Journal of the World Aquaculture Society).

[May  2021]

New Publication:

Foreign Aid, Democracy Promotion, and Taiwan's Quest for Recognition in: The Niche Diplomacy of Asian Middle Powers (Lexington Books).

[February  2021]

Finally, the first batch of Austrian wines (Groszer Wein) arrived for sale at Thirsty Scholar (Taichung, Taiwan).

[December  2020]

Opening of permanent photo exhibition at Gulu's House,  Taichung.

[November  2020]

Presenter, Joint Conference APISA/KISA, Kyung Hee University (South Korea).

Passed exam for WSET Level 3 Award in Wines

[October  2020]

Paper (in German) on the public discourse regarding the COVID-19 pandemic in China and its neighbouring countries published in an extensive volume edited by Thomas Schmidinger and Josef Weidenholzer on the socio-political consequences of the pandemic.

[February 2020]

Paper on Taiwan's defensive democratization published online in Asian Affairs: An American Review

Commentary on Wilhelm Reichmann's analysis of the 2020 elections in Taiwan published online. 

[October 2019]

Presenter, Asian Conference on Human Security, Multiculturalism and Democracy, Bangkok, Thailand.

[June  2019]

Presenter, 44th Annual Conference, British International Studies Association, London. 

[May 2019]

Opening reception of my first solo exhibition in Taiwan at Lei Gallery, Taichung.

[November 2018]

Presenter, Regional Interdependencies of Democratisation in Asia, Seoul, Korea,

[October 2018]

Presenter, Revisiting Bandung: Cultivating Asia's Insights on Global International Relations and Political, Bandung, Indonesia.


[October 2017]

Presenter, 11th Congress of the Asian Political and International Studies Association, Phitsanoluk.

[March 2016]

Presenter, APISA-FES Conference on New Authoritarianism in Asia, Ehwa Womans University, Seoul.

[October 2015]

New book on democratic governance in Northeast Asia released by Palgrave/Macmillian with two chapters on Taiwan.

Link to publication

[September 2015]

Presenter, 9th Congress of the Asian Political and International Studies Association (APISA), Phnom Penh, Cambodia.>

[February 2015]

Presenter, Preparatory Workshop, 9th Congress of the Asian Political and International Studies Association (APISA), Phnom Penh, Cambodia.>

[September 2014]

Discussant, 8th Congress of the Asian Political and International Studies Association (APISA), Chiang Mai, Thailand.>

[February 2014]

The Rise and Fall of Transitional Justice in Taiwan was published as part of the Middle East-Asia Project (MAP) series on Pathways to Transitional Justice in the Arab World - Reflections on the Asia Pacific Experience (PDF).

[January 2014]

Post-Conflict Development in East Asia published by Ashgate with one of my papers on human security in Taiwan.

[5-6 December 2013]

Organizer and presenter, Rethinking Human Security in the Asian Century, International Conference, Taiwan.

[14 October 2013]

Co-signer, Statement on the current political situation in Taiwan published in the Taipei Times.

[21 September 2013]

Panel Chair, International Conference on Rethinking Human Security in the Asian Century, Mandarin Oriental, Manila. >

[30 April 2013]

Discussant, International Conference on the Comparison of Asian and European Regional Integration, Nanhua University, Taiwan. >

[January 2013]

Encyclopedia of Transitional Justice (Cambridge University Press, 2013) released with two of my chapters on transitional justice in Taiwan and Austria. >

[29/30 November 2012]

Chair, Executive Committee Meeting and Annual General Meeting, Asian Political and International Studies Association, City University of Hong Kong and Hong Kong Institute of Education. >

[12 October 2012]

Organizer and paper presenter, International Workshop on International Relations, Economic Development and Human Security in East and Southeast Asia, Overseas Chinese University, Taiwan. >

[18 May 2012]

Presenter at the International Workshop on East Asian Human Security and Post-Conflict Development in Comparative Perspective, Institute for Development and Human Security, Ewha Womans University, Seoul. >


Political Dynasties and Democratization:
A Case Study of Taiwan

Asian Journal of Comparative Politics, Vol.8(3), 2024

The video presentation is about the relationship between political dynasties and democratisation. Political families in transitional societies are often seen in the context of corruption, democratic regression, deterioration of socio-economic development, inequality, and deprivation. In my contribution, I argue that legacy politicians are not per se the Pandora’s box of low-quality politics. More specifically, I argue that democratization conditions the behaviour of political dynasties. Using the example of Taiwan, I show in this presentation how democratization has restrained the particularistic potentials of clientelistic networks and gradually reshaped them into programmatic behaviour.

         I separated my presentation into five parts. First, I talk about the prevalence of political dynasties in democratic societies, its causes, and implications (2min30sec). Second, I discuss the mediating effect of democratization in terms of restraining and modifying the particularistic behaviour of dynasties (5min50sec). In the third part, I look at the evolution of dynasties in Taiwan (8min47sec). The fourth part addresses the question of how the modernization of institutions and citizenship norms has transformed particularistic dynasties into more programmatic ones (16min5sec). In the concluding section of the presentation, I summarize the most important findings of the study (41min38sec) and endeavour to answer the question of why some states have been successful in terms of restraining the particularistic behaviour of electoral dynasties and why others have mostly failed to do so (29min55sec). The comparative part includes South Korea, Japan, Thailand, Indonesia, and the Philippines. Here, the Thai case of programmatic linkages in the rural areas is particularly interesting (35min4sec).

Transcript of the presentation in PDF.

Annual Congress Asian Political and International Studies Association (APISA)

June 28 - 1 July 2023, Bali, Indonesia

At the end of June, I attended the annual congress of the Asian Political and International Studies Association (APISA). The event was co-hosted by the Institute of Peace and Democracy and Warmadewa University in Bali, Indonesia. As a member of the Executive Committee, I am delighted to see that APISA is back after the pandemic with concrete ideas of launching an annual Bali Peace and Capacity-Building Forum.



The Political Economy of Beer in Taiwan

In: Beer in Asia: A political Economy, Routledge, 2023

The video offers an overview of my contribution to a recently published book on the political economy of beer in Asia. The book 'Beer in Asia: A political Economy' was edited by my colleague Paul Chambers of Naresuan University (Thailand) and was published by Routledge early this year.


I have divided my overview into three parts. The first looks at the global development of beer consumption. In the second part, I  focus on the evolutionary stages of Taiwan's beer industry. More specifically, I talk about the role of the Japanese colonial government in establishing a local beer industry. Apart from that, I  look into the socio-political role of beer in postwar Taiwan. Finally, the concluding part of my brief overview summarizes the key findings of my study.

Transcript of the presentation in PDF.

Elections and Election Campaigning

2nd Asian Summer School on Political Parties and Democratization (Konrad Adenauer Foundation, University of Nottingham, OSCE Academy Bishkek, APISA)


I have separated my course into two parts. The first one deals with elections and their impact on democratic development. Here I discuss the various roles of elections in different types of regimes. That is, I address several key issues raised in contemporary political studies, such as democratization and national identity formation through repeated elections.




The second part looks at electoral campaigns. Here I discuss different campaign modes and their utilization in democratic as well as in non-democratic regimes. I try to highlight the frequently ignored importance of popular culture in Asian electoral campaigns. More specifically, I look at the electoral campaigns of two former Japanese prime ministers, Koizumi Junichiro and Hatoyama Yukio, and that of former Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian.


I further discuss three examples of how civil society has made use of popular culture to influence electoral outcomes and to challenge authoritarian regimes in recent years. Cases studies analyzed here include:

- Wake Up by 5forty2, Ashtaka, and Namewee

- Milk Tea Alliance

- Fragile by Namewee and Kimberly Chen

Transcript of the online course in PDF.

Global Society Facing Pandemic:
Towards Strengthening Governance and Cooperation

Mexican International Studies Association

XXXIV Annual Congress 2021

In my presentation I analysed Taiwan's foreign policy initiatives during the pandemic. More specifically, I discussed policy initiatives in terms of specific humanitarian initiatives (public diplomacy) as well as efforts to attract the attention of foreign audiences by highlighting the effectiveness of the government's COVID policies (nation branding).

Foreign Aid, Democracy Promotion, and Taiwan's Quest for Recognition

In: The Niche Diplomacy of Asian Middle Powers (Lexington Books, 2021).

This book chapter looks at the scope and nature of Taiwan's changing foreign policies and discusses their success/failure in terms of their effectiveness to benefit the recipient countries as well as their contribution to Taiwan's global image and diplomatic leverage.


Link to publication 

The French Collection

Permanent Photo Exhibition, Gulu's House, Taichung

The French Collection consists of a series of pictures I took in 2016/17 in Brittany, the French Riviera and Paris. This book was first published on the occasion of the permanent exhibition of the French Collection at Gulu's House, Taichung.  


Link to publication

Link to photography section


Das Virus aus Wuhan und die gesellschaftspolitischen  Implikationen: die Volksrepublik China und ihre Nachbarn

In: Schmidinger, Thomas / Weidenholzer, Josef (Hrsg.):

Virenregime - Wie die Coronakrise unsere Welt verändert (Wien), 2020

My paper is not about the virus itself, not about a medical explanation or assessment of the measures taken, but about the general discourse on the socio-political consequences of the pandemic. In the first part of my anaylsis, I discuss the debate about China's role in the pandemic. In the second part, I address the lack of solidarity with China and the consequences of the pandemic in terms of democratic development. The last section of the paper deals with the question of what will remain of the critical discourse after the crisis and to what extent the pandemic has changed society in its basic democratic structures.

Link to publication

PDF of my paper

In response to Wilhelm Reichmann

International 2020


In January 2020, Wilhelm Reichmann of the Austrian journal INTERNATIONAL published his analysis of the 2020 national elections in Taiwan on the journal's YouTube channel. As the analysis contains several misconceptions about Taiwan's political situation, I felt inclined to post a commentary.

PDF of my commentary.  

Taiwan's defensive democratization

Asian Affairs: An American Review, 2020

Since the lifting of martial law in 1987, Taiwan has progressed toward one of Asia's most advanced democracies. This paper looks at the historical and socio-political circumstances and traces the global and domestic factors behind the transformation. Assuming that advanced levels of democratic governance can only be obtained through mediated social control over the state and the economy, the study explores whether democratic values and norms have become internalized and identifies the current caveats of further democratic development. More specifically, the paper argues that although Taiwan's democratization has been caused by external sovereignty-related factors, the discourse on national identity has repoliticzed the public political realm after decades of authoritarianism and led to the habitualization of democratic values and norms. The paper concludes with an assessment of the prospects for comprehensive and inclusive public participation in the shaping of Taiwan's political conditions.


Link to publication



On 4 May 2019, the opening reception of my first solo exhibition in Taiwan was held at Lei Gallery, Taichung. Twenty-two argyrotype and cyanotype prints were shown. The prints were part of a larger collection of photographies I published in my book Fragments.


ISBN 978-986-95719-1-3




Explaining Democratic Consolidation and Regress in East Asia: A Multivariate Analysis

11th Congress of the Asian Political and International Studies Association, 2017

In this study my colleague and I analyzed the nature of popular support for democratic governance in East Asia. Using the latest data of the Asian Barometer Survey (ABS), we applied latent class cluster analysis and multinomial logistic regression modelling to offer a micro-level explanation of political developments in the Philippines, Thailand, Taiwan and South Korea.


The Dialectic of Nationalism and Democratic Governance in Taiwan

Asian International Studies Review, 2016


In this study I argue that Taiwan's public contestation over national identity has been a crucial factor in its political development. Specifically, I demonstrate that the agonistic relationship between Taiwanese nationalists and Chinese nationalists has been a major force behind the development of democratic governance in Taiwan, thus contradicting previous studies suggesting that any contestation over national identity would undermine democratic development and destabilize security in East Asia


Link to publication (PDF)


The effect of cigarette price increases on cigarette consumption, tax revenue, and smoking-related death in Africa from 1999 to 2013

International Journal of Public Health, 2017

In this study my colleagues and I investigated the effects of price hikes on cigarette consumption, tobacco tax revenues, and reduction in smoking-caused mortality in 36 African countries. Panel data from the 1999-2013 Euromonitor International, the World Bank and the World Health Organization was used in our fixed-effects and random-effects regression models of panel data to estimate the elasticity of cigarette prices and simulate the effect of price fluctuations.


Link to publication

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