Betsy Leimbigler


Lansstraße 5-9
14195 Berlin


October 2015-

PhD Candidate

John F. Kennedy Institute, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany


Master’s in Political Science

Thesis title: Mixed Frames of Obamacare: A Critical Discourse

Analysis of the Intertwining of Rights and Market Frames in

Discourses Surrounding the Patient Protection and Affordable

Care Act,University of Ottawa, Canada

Honours Bachelor in Social Sciences

International Studies and Modern Languages, French Immersion

University of Ottawa, Canada

August 2010

German Language Certificate

International Bodensee Hochschule             

University of Konstanz, Konstanz, Germany



June-September 2015

Researcher, Canada Council for the Arts and Canadian Commission for UNESCO, Ottawa

-Conducting research on social impact measurement in the arts, designing surveys to assess the value of UNESCO schools in Canada

September 2014 - September 2015

Research Assistant on Cultural Budgets – Centre on Governance, University of Ottawa -Conducting qualitative and quantitative research on each Canadian province and territory’s cultural budget



September 2011 - May 2013

Teaching Assistant, Introduction to Globalization (POL1102) and Foundations of Research in Social Science (POL2156), University of Ottawa

-Grading papers, assessing student participation and presentations, proctoring exams & leading discussion groups


Teacher, Headquarters staff, Dance coordinator. Tsinghua English Summer Camp 2012, 2013, 2014 – Tsinghua University, Beijing, China

-Working at Headquarters, supervising 140 teacher and foreign volunteers

-Delivering special lectures on Canadian politics and parliament

-Hosting, judging and MCing various competitions and closing ceremonies of the 3000-student program; organizing campus events


Grants & Awards

February 2013

travel grant from the Royal Norwegian Embassy to attend the International Student Festival in Trondheim, Norway

September 2011 full scholarship for Master’s study at the University of Ottawa ($30,000)
August 2010

Ontario Baden-Wuerttemberg exchange scholarship ($1,200)

July 2009 National Laureate, Canadian Millennium Excellence Awards, Millennium Foundation ($12,500)

Dean’s List – University of Ottawa, Academic Excellence

Fall 2007

Admission Scholarship, University of Ottawa ($10,000)

Success and Failure of Health Care Reform in the United States: The Role of Strategic Framing in Policy Development at Three Critical Junctures from 1960-2013 (Dissertationsprojekt)

Dissertation in Political Science

Mentoring team:
First supervisor: Prof. Christian Lammert
Second supervisor: Prof. Robert Entman
Third supervisor: Prof. Eric Champagne

Healthcare reform in the United States has been a contentious process, both fraught with political failures but also defined by key successes. The Ph.D. dissertation analyzes three health care initiatives under the Johnson, Clinton and Obama administrations through various framing techniques and discourse analysis. The research seeks to identify and categorize different types of frames used in Presidential and opposition discourses at three historical critical junctures in health care development in the U.S. In doing so, the Ph.D. will focus on discerning what types of frames emerge during discourses on health care reform from 1960-1966, 1990-1996 and 2008-2013. These particular administrations have been selected for analysis as they constitute the periods when Medicare∕Medicaid, the Health Security Act and the PPACA respectively were debated in Congress, and the time periods allow for a pre- and post-analysis of a few years after each policy’s passage or failure.

The frames that are used during these time periods reflect the social, political and economic contexts of health care bill reform, and the frames used in Presidential discourses and discourses by the opposition when speaking to Congress and to the general public constitute an important aspect of the health care reform legislative process. Framing and strategic frames help us to understand not only how acts passed or failed; they also take into account the contexts in which they were proposed. The market-rights frame, individual-group frame and state-federal responsibility frames give a fascinating and important insight into the messages relayed by political elites to influence the electorate and the general public.

Dahlem Research School
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft