The Post-Merkel CDU/CSU and the 2021 Bundestag Election

Tuesday, January 19, 2021, 12:00 pm EST // 18:00 CET

For a year, the governing Christian Democratic Union has been considering a new leader. By January 16th, the CDU will finally have one and can start to focus on the general election campaign. Many questions will need to be answered soon. Will the new leader take the party to the right and, if so, will this strategy pay off? Will the new leader insist on being the chancellor candidate or will he step aside in favor of CSU leader Markus Söder? What issues will the party run on and will its policy positions resonate with the electorate?

Matthias Dilling is a Departmental Lecturer in Comparative Politics and a Special Lecturer at Magdalen College at Oxford University. He holds a DPhil in Politics and an MPhil in Comparative Government (with distinction) from the University of Oxford (Nuffield College) and a BA (First Class) from the FU Berlin. During his DPhil research, he was a Visiting Researcher at Yale University and the University of Vienna. Before joining the Oxford Department of Politics and International Relations (DPIR), he was a Stipendiary Lecturer (Career Development) in Politics at Pembroke College, University of Oxford. His research is on comparative politics, with special focus on institutional development and party politics in Europe, particularly intra-party politics, party organization, and European center-right and radical right parties.

Isabelle Kürschner, PhD, is a renowned expert on party politics and political systems in Germany and the United States. She started her professional career in political consulting with leaders on the state and federal level in Germany and Bavaria. Today, Isabelle is sharing her expertise as an external advisor with political leaders working on party programs and candidate recruitment. From 2015 to 2017 she was a member of the Enquête Commission in the Bavarian State Parliament “Equal Living Conditions throughout Bavaria,” whose task was to show how a high standard of living and work can be maintained and developed equally in all parts of the state.

Isabelle completed her undergraduate studies at Friedrich-Alexander-University, Erlangen, and McGill University, Montréal. She received her master’s degree and her doctorate from the Catholic University of Eichstätt. During her academic career she received fellowships with the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation and the American Center of Contemporary German Studies (AGI) in Washington, DC, and a Fulbright scholarship at the University of San Francisco.

This webinar will convene via Zoom. Please contact Elizabeth Caruth at with any questions.

This webinar is supported by the German German Marshall Fund of the United States. It is presented in partnership with the International Association for the Study of German Politics and the BMW Center for German and European Studies, Georgetown University.