Mathias De Roeck is a doctoral researcher at the Institute of Development Policy and Management (IOB) of the University of Antwerp and the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences (Department of Sociology) of the University of Ghent since 2014. He is also a teaching assistant at the IOB. Mathias De Roeck holds masters in sociology, general studies in economics and political science.
His doctoral research investigates the structural reasons for hybrid regime stability. Hybrid political regimes combine institutions of representation (a parliament, independent judiciary) with institutions of domination (political control) for regulating the access to and exercise of state power in sovereign countries. In his research, he draws on democratic theory to clarify the concept of hybrid regimes, stepping away from procedural definitions of political regimes that have too often looked at elections. He seeks to explain the stability of these regimes by zooming in on the structure of the international system and the infrastructural power of the state. The distribution of power between countries over time affects hybrid regimes in several ways, from shifts in international pressure to democratize to changes in the consensual order. Furthermore, states with strong infrastructural power penetrate far into national territory, thereby boosting the potential to ‘manage’ society, consolidating the political regime.
For his research, he compiles the ‘Institutions, Liberties and Developments’ (ILD) dataset, bringing together quantitative macro-comparative data (QMCD) from a wide variety of sources from 1946 on. Furthermore, in close collaboration with other researchers, he gathered longitudinal social network data on political, economic and military relations between countries from 1965 until 2005, ideal to study structural evolutions. His research draws on nested analysis, combining large-N and small-N studies, to explain hybrid regime stability.