Soetkin Verhaegen is Assistant Professor in European Politics at the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Department of Political Science, at Maastricht University. She is associated researcher at the Department of Political science at Stockholm University, and at ISPOLE at UC Louvain. Previously, Soetkin was Postdoctoral researcher at UC Louvain (2019-2020), Stockholm University (2017-2019), and KU Leuven (2016) where she also received her doctoral degree for her thesis on the development of European identity (2015).

Soetkin’s research inquires questions about citizens’ perceptions of (il)legitimacy of the EU in the context of multilevel governance. Focussing on attitudes about regional and international government and institutions, her work is situated at the crossroads of political sociology, comparative politics and international relations. Furthermore, Soetkin’s research interests include European identity, youth, socialization, political participation and elites. She is specialized in survey research and focus groups. 

Soetkin is part of various projects in Belgium and Sweden: RepResent - Representation and Democratic Resentment, LegGov - Legitimacy in Global Governance, and a project on educational practices towards critical citizenship - Vem kan man lita på? Samhällskunskapsundervisning om tillit för ett aktivt och kritiskt medborgarskap.

Soetkin was visiting scholar at the LSE, Gothenburg University and the University of Münster, she was scientific advisor at Karel de Grote Hogeschool, and teacher for Europe House Ryckevelde. Soetkin has been teaching courses on European politics, quantitative research methods, comparative politics, political participation, political sociology, and has been supervising numerous thesis projects (BA, MA and doctoral level).


Doctoral dissertation

Verhaegen, S. (2015). The development of European identity: A study of the individual-level development processes, KU Leuven, 290 pp.

Peer-reviewed articles

Tallberg, J., Verhaegen, S. (forthcoming).  The Legitimacy of International Institutions among Rising and Established Powers. Global Policy.

Dupuy, C., Verhaegen, S., Van Ingelgom, V. (2020). Support for regionalisation in federal Belgium: the role of political socialization. Publius: The Journal of Federalism (online first).

de Moor, J., Verhaegen, S. (2020). Gateway or getaway? Testing the link between lifestyle politics and other modes of political participation. European Political Science Review, 12(1), 91-111.

Verhaegen, S. (2018). What to expect from European identity? Explaining support for solidarity in times of crisis. Comparative European Politics, 16(5), 871-904.

Verhaegen, S., Hooghe, M., Quintelier, E. (2017). The effect of political trust and trust in in European citizens on European identity. European Political Science Review, 9(2), 161-181.

Kelbel, C., Van Ingelgom, V., Verhaegen, S. (2016). Looking for the European voter: Split-ticket voting in the Belgian regional and European elections of 2009 and 2014. Politics and Governance, 4(1), 116-129.

Verhaegen, S., Boonen, J. (2016). The development of political knowledge in adolescence: The importance of information-rich socialization contexts. Politics, Culture and Socialization, 7(1-2), 7-27.

Verhaegen, S., Hooghe, M. (2015). Does more knowledge about the European Union lead to a stronger European identity? A comparative analysis among adolescents in 21 European member states. Innovation: The European Journal of Social Science Research, 28(2), 127-146.

Quintelier, E., Verhaegen, S., Hooghe, M. (2014). The Intergenerational Transmission of European Identity: The Role of Gender and Discussion within Families. Journal of Common Market Studies, 52(5), 1103-1119.

Verhaegen, S., Hooghe, M., Quintelier, E. (2014). European identity and support for European integration: A matter of perceived economic benefits?. Kyklos, 67(2), 295-314.

Verhaegen, S., Hooghe, M., Meeusen, C. (2013). Opportunities to learn about Europe at school. A comparative analysis among adolescents in 21 European member states. Journal of Curriculum Studies, 45(6), 838-864.

Verhaegen, S., Hooghe, M., Dejaeghere, Y. (2012). Leidt meer kennis over de Europese Unie tot een sterkere Europese identiteit? Een vergelijkend onderzoek bij adolescenten in 21 lidstaten. Res Publica: Tijdschrift voor Politologie, 54 (4), 465-491.

Book chapters

Nasiritousi, N., Verhaegen, S. (2019). Disentangling Legitimacy: Comparing Stakeholder Assessments of Five Key Climate and Energy Governance Institutions. In: F. Zelli, K. Bäckstrand, N. Nasiritousi, J. Skovgaard, O. Widerberg (eds.) Governing the Climate-Energy Nexus: Challenges to Coherence, Legitimacy and Effectiveness, Cambridge University Press, forthcoming.

Verhaegen, S., Hoon, L., Kelbel, C. & Van Ingelgom, V. (2018). A three-level game: Citizens’ attitudes about the division of competences in a multilevel context. In: K. Deschouwer, (ed.) Mind the Gap: Political participation and representation in Belgium, Colchester: ECPR Press, 133-160.

Hooghe, M., Verhaegen, S. (2017). The Democratic Legitimacy of the EU and Support for Redistribution within Europe. In: F. Vandenbroucke, C. Barnard, G. De Baerde (eds.) A European Social Union After the Crisis, Cambridge University Press, 120-139.

Verhaegen, S., Udrea, G. (2017). The Impact of Social and Cognitive Learning Experiences on European Identity Development among Young Europeans. In: A. Bargaoanu, R. Buturoiu, L. Radu (eds.) Why Europe? Narratives and Counter-narratives of European Integration, New York: Peter Lang, 103-131.

Kelbel, C., Van Ingelgom, V. & Verhaegen, S. (2015). Op zoek naar de Europese kiezer. In: Deschouwer K., Delwit P., Hooghe M., Baudewyns P., Walgrave S. (Eds.) De kiezer ontcijferd. Leuven: Lannoo Campus, 192-212.

Working papers

Verhaegen, S. (2018). The relationship between national and European identification, and trust in EU institutions, CERGU’s Working Paper Series, 2018:4.
Hooghe, M. & Verhaegen, S. (2014). The Democratic Legitimacy of the EU and Support for Redistribution within Europe, Euroforum Policy Papers.

Scientific reports

Verhaegen, S., Dellmuth, L.M., Scholte, J.A., Tallberg, J. (2019). LegGov Elite Survey – Technical report, 74 pp. Stockholm: Stockholm University.

Scholte, J.A., Tallberg, J., Verhaegen, S. (2019). Elite attitudes toward global governance – A report of summary findings from the LegGov Elite Survey, 42 pp. Stockholm: Stockholm University.

Hooghe, M., Quintelier, E., Meeusen, C., Verhaegen, S., Boonen, J., Smets, A. (2013). Parent-Child Socialization Study (PCSS) 2012-2013- Technical Report Panel Survey, 50 pp. Leuven: Centre for Political Sciences.

Hooghe, M., Quintelier, E., Verhaegen, S., Boonen, J., Meeusen, C. (2012). Parent-Child Socialization Study (PCSS) 2012 - Technical Report, 57 pp. Leuven: Centre for Political Sciences, KU Leuven.


Legitimacy in Global Governance Elite Survey (2019). Elite perceptions of legitimacy of global governance institutions. Verhaegen, S., Dellmuth, L.M., Scholte, J., Tallberg, J.

Parent-Child Socialization Study (PCSS) 2012 -2013. Panel study by Hooghe, M., Quintelier, E., Verhaegen, S., Boonen, J., Meeusen, C., Leuven: Centre for Political Research.