Shamsoddin Shariati


Postgraduate Research Student

TSI Building


Thesis title: "Managing 'Wicked Problems': State Capacity and the COVID-19 pandemic response in Europe."
Supervisor: Prof John O’Brennan

I am a PhD student and a John Hume scholar in sociology at Maynooth University. My research focuses on comparative politics, building state capacity, complexities in public policy, and the management of wicked problems. My PhD thesis examines the COVID-19 pandemic as a ‘wicked problem’ with the aim of achieving greater understanding of the capacity of states to manage public policy challenges, and how these capacities develop in states. The research focuses on the European Union and employs qualitative comparative analysis (QCA) and examines the management of the COVID-19 pandemic by a range of EU states. The research also using historical multiple case study methodology will answer the question of how state capacity develops over time and what specific obstacles prevent the development of effective policy interventions.
I was awarded a First-Class degree in my bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering. However, for my master’s programme, I switched academic fields because I have a strong interest in research in the social sciences. I was then accepted by a leading university in Iran for my master’s degree, going on to achieve an ‘excellent’ dissertation grade and ranked as the first graduate student in 2021 in the Department of Sociology at Shahid Beheshti University. The title of my master’s dissertation is ‘A Comparative Study of Sociological Factors Affecting Obeying Laws: A Case Study of Traffic Law Obedience Based on Theories of “Social Order” and “State Capacities”’.