I started working as Universitair Docent (Assistant Prof.) for Political History at Utrecht University in 2009, after writing my PhD at Humboldt University, Berlin, and researching and teaching at the university of Bielefeld. In 2013, I finished a second book (German 'Habilitation') on the political and cultural implications of the use of statistics in the 18th century, appraised and awarded by the German Historians' Association. I specialise in early modern European history, starting with France and Germany and extending to Russia as well as to the Netherlands and Britain. My teaching interests focus on early modern religion, politics and political culture, but also include urban history, the history of crime and social control and the comparative history of identities. My current research is geared towards a long-term comparative study of the genesis of democratic institutions in Europe and America from the late Middle Ages through the early modern period and the 'Age of Revolutions'.