Skip to main content
Isabelle Hertner for KCL profile

Dr Isabelle Hertner

Senior Lecturer in Politics of Britain in Europe

Research interests

  • Politics

Biography

Isabelle researches party politics in Germany, Britain, France, and at the European Union level. She is the director of King’s Centre for German Transnational Relations. Isabelle joined King’s in September 2016, having previously worked as a lecturer in German and European Politics and Society at the University of Birmingham. She was also the deputy director of Birmingham’s Institute for German Studies (IGS). Isabelle holds a PhD in European politics from Royal Holloway (University of London) and a MA in European Political and Administrative Studies from the College of Europe in Bruges. She did her undergraduate degree in Politics, French and Italian at the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg and spent a year studying at Sciences Po Bordeaux.

Research

Isabelle is an expert on political parties in the UK, Germany, France, and at the European Union level. Her research is comparative in nature and draws primarily on qualitative methods, such as elite interviews, surveys, participant observation.

Isabelle’s research focuses on:

  • Political parties and gender, and in particular, women’s and LGBTQ+ people’s representation
  • Party organisation (intra-party democracy and the power of members)
  • Party policies
  • Party discourses
  • EU-level parties (‘Europarties’) and their organisational and ideological development
  • Social Democratic parties and the European Union
  • Far-right parties and gender
  • The politics of Brexit
  • German and French EU politics

Isabelle’s research cuts across EU-level and national politics. She is an expert on political parties at the national and European levels. In 2018 she published her research monograph Centre-left parties and the European Union (Manchester University Press) in which she compared how the Labour Party, the French Socialists and the German Social Democrats deal with the challenges of EU membership. She has also published journal articles on Europarties and their individual members; on toxic masculinity inside political parties; and on the immigration policies and discourses of Germany’s CDU/CSU during Angela Merkel’s chancellorship.

Isabelle has co-edited the 10th edition of Politics UK (Routledge, 2022), for which she wrote a chapter on Gender and British Politics.

Teaching

Isabelle teaches on a variety of undergraduate modules, such as British Politics, European Gender Politics, and Comparative European Politics.

In the past she has also taught modules on the European Union, Britain and the European Union, Political Analysis, Research Methods, and the Welfare State in Europe.

PhD Supervisions

Isabelle has supervised seven PhD students to completion and would welcome applications in the following research areas:

  • Political parties in Europe: organisation, policies, discourses, strategies
  • Gender and the far right
  • Women and LGBTQ+ people’s representation in politics
  • The European Parliament: elections, internal politics and policies
  • Europarties
  • German and French politics

Expertise and public engagement

Isabelle has appeared live on Sky News to speak about German elections and British EU politics.

Isabelle has also given an interview on BBC 4. In addition, she has written pieces for The Conversation on German politics, done a podcast for The UK in a Changing Europe on the 2021 German elections, written a piece for the LSE’s Brexit blog and the PSA’s Political Insight blog (on the British Labour Party).

    Research

    CGTR
    Centre for German Transnational Relations

    The centre examines Germany's changing transnational role in the economic, political and cultural spheres. We study how the recent rise of Germany to a position as a 'reluctant hegemon' shapes European economies as well as the world economy.

    News

    Student-led podcast puts focus on disability

    A King’s student is the new host of a podcast which focusses on the issues facing disabled and neurodivergent people in academia and the working world.

    nihsa podcast

    Students offered insights into careers in EU institutions

    The ongoing efforts to improve visibility and career paths for women in top European institutions was in focus at an event hosted at King’s College London.

    EUinstitutions

    Big issues on the agenda as students visit parliament

    Reforming the House of Lords and Scottish independence were some of the big political issues up for discussion as a group of students from the School of...

    VisitParl001

    New chancellor is a 'big deal' for Germany

    The election of Olaf Scholz is a “big deal” for Germany but it “remains to be seen” whether the new chancellor will bring about radical change.

    German flag flies in front of the Reichstag Building, Berlin

    Book edited by academic will offer fresh perspectives

    The upcoming edition of a bestselling book features a chapter penned by a King’s College London academic.

    PoliticsUK

    What does the future hold for Germany's political centre?

    The future of Germany's political centre was in focus for a webinar hosted by the Centre for German Transnational Relatons at King's College London.

    The Centre for German Transnational Relations

    Events

    06MarIWD24 women vote image contensis size

    IWD 2024: Will women determine who rules the world in 2024?

    Ahead of International Women’s Day, the Faculty of Social Science & Public Policy is hosting a panel discussion to explore the role women will play in this...

    17MarAfter 16 years in office, Angela Merkel stepped down as Germany’s Chancellor in December 2021

    Stop or Go? The first 100 days of the German traffic light coalition in government

    A panel of experts take stock of the new government’s first 100 days in office.

    Please note: this event has passed.

    22OctThe Bundestag.

    Party politics in Germany 30 years after reunification: The slow death of the political centre?

    What is the future for the centre ground in German politics?

    Please note: this event has passed.

    08OctThe event is being hosted by the Centre for German Transnational Relations

    Two Countries Divided: Unpacking the Legacy of German and Korean Unification Policies

    Experts will discuss the impact of reunification on Germany and what lessons it may hold for attempts in future to reunify Korea.

    Please note: this event has passed.

      Research

      CGTR
      Centre for German Transnational Relations

      The centre examines Germany's changing transnational role in the economic, political and cultural spheres. We study how the recent rise of Germany to a position as a 'reluctant hegemon' shapes European economies as well as the world economy.

      News

      Student-led podcast puts focus on disability

      A King’s student is the new host of a podcast which focusses on the issues facing disabled and neurodivergent people in academia and the working world.

      nihsa podcast

      Students offered insights into careers in EU institutions

      The ongoing efforts to improve visibility and career paths for women in top European institutions was in focus at an event hosted at King’s College London.

      EUinstitutions

      Big issues on the agenda as students visit parliament

      Reforming the House of Lords and Scottish independence were some of the big political issues up for discussion as a group of students from the School of...

      VisitParl001

      New chancellor is a 'big deal' for Germany

      The election of Olaf Scholz is a “big deal” for Germany but it “remains to be seen” whether the new chancellor will bring about radical change.

      German flag flies in front of the Reichstag Building, Berlin

      Book edited by academic will offer fresh perspectives

      The upcoming edition of a bestselling book features a chapter penned by a King’s College London academic.

      PoliticsUK

      What does the future hold for Germany's political centre?

      The future of Germany's political centre was in focus for a webinar hosted by the Centre for German Transnational Relatons at King's College London.

      The Centre for German Transnational Relations

      Events

      06MarIWD24 women vote image contensis size

      IWD 2024: Will women determine who rules the world in 2024?

      Ahead of International Women’s Day, the Faculty of Social Science & Public Policy is hosting a panel discussion to explore the role women will play in this...

      17MarAfter 16 years in office, Angela Merkel stepped down as Germany’s Chancellor in December 2021

      Stop or Go? The first 100 days of the German traffic light coalition in government

      A panel of experts take stock of the new government’s first 100 days in office.

      Please note: this event has passed.

      22OctThe Bundestag.

      Party politics in Germany 30 years after reunification: The slow death of the political centre?

      What is the future for the centre ground in German politics?

      Please note: this event has passed.

      08OctThe event is being hosted by the Centre for German Transnational Relations

      Two Countries Divided: Unpacking the Legacy of German and Korean Unification Policies

      Experts will discuss the impact of reunification on Germany and what lessons it may hold for attempts in future to reunify Korea.

      Please note: this event has passed.