Staffan Kumlin's research concerns comparative political behaviour, public opinion, and democracy in European welfare states. He is the author of The Personal and the Political: How Personal Welfare State Experiences Affect Political Trust and Ideology (Palgrave-Macmillan 2004) and co-editor of How Welfare States Shape the Democratic Public: Policy Feedback, Participation, Voting, and Attitudes (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2014). He has also published in scientific journals such as British Journal of Political Science, Comparative Political Studies, Comparative Politics, European Journal of Political Research, European Political Science Review, European Union Politics, Journal of European Social Policy, and Journal of Public Policy. He has authored chapters in numerous edited books including The Oxford Handbook of Political Behavior and The Oxford Handbook of Social and Political Trust. He co-designed the "welfare state module" in the 2016 European Social Survey 2016 and is co-author of a textbook on representative democracy called Det politiska spelet. Medborgare, medier och politiker i den representativa demokratin (Studentlitteratur 2014).
Staffan Kumlin was previously full Professor of political science at University of Gothenburg and Research Professor at Institute for Social Research in Oslo. He has also been employed at Swedish Collegium for Advanced Study and spent longer periods (one year or more) as visiting fellow at Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB) and at Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, European University Institute in Florence.
In 2005 Staffan Kumlin became the first political scientist to receive a Pro Futura Fellowship from Riksbankens Jubileumsfond.