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    Albania’s election: A country in need of a new political narrative as it aims to open EU accession talks

Albania’s election: A country in need of a new political narrative as it aims to open EU accession talks

Albania will hold a parliamentary election on 25 June. The election was originally scheduled for 18 June, but was pushed back seven days following a prolonged political crisis. Andi Hoxhaj previews the vote, highlighting that while the country has made substantial improvements with respect to socio-economic reforms, its lack of political stability has held back attempts to pursue closer […]

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    Macron won a huge majority, but he is supported by only one in five voters

Macron won a huge majority, but he is supported by only one in five voters

Emmanuel Macron’s La République En Marche (LREM) completed their victory of the French legislative elections on 18 June, although the size of the majority was not as large as had been predicted following the first round of voting a week earlier. Nick Parsons highlights that although Macron can now claim legitimacy to push forward with a number of ambitious reforms, […]

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    For the Russian authorities, the threat of Navalny lies in the message not the man

For the Russian authorities, the threat of Navalny lies in the message not the man

The arrest of Alexei Navalny for organising an ‘unauthorised’ anti-corruption rally on 12 June represents the latest in a long line of run-ins with the authorities and simply adds to his credentials as one of Russia’s leading opposition figures, writes Sean Roberts. However, the real issue for the Kremlin is his anti-corruption message and its contagious spread across the […]

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    Britain’s surprising election: Austerity and inequality make for angry and unpredictable voters

Britain’s surprising election: Austerity and inequality make for angry and unpredictable voters

The unexpected result of the general election is just another case of voters punishing governments for their handling of the economy, writes Jonathan Hopkin. He argues citizens have had enough of an economic system that deliberately benefits only the few. Established political parties have failed to provide a vision for change, and so new political leaders who do so […]

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    Macron looks set for a huge majority, but does he have popular support?

Macron looks set for a huge majority, but does he have popular support?

Emmanuel Macron’s La République En Marche (LREM) are set to win a large majority in the French parliament following the first round of legislative elections on 11 June. Nick Parsons suggests that while few can question Macron’s victory, the low turnout in the election also raises questions about the health of French democracy. Far-reaching reforms may ultimately be initiated […]

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    How ‘groupthink’ in Theresa May’s Downing Street delivered another round of UK political chaos

How ‘groupthink’ in Theresa May’s Downing Street delivered another round of UK political chaos

The UK’s political turmoil has continued with the Conservatives’ disastrous 2017 campaign. But what led to the multiple miscalculations involved? Patrick Dunleavy argues that it forms part of a wider pattern of mis-governing from the centre of Whitehall that has characterised Theresa May’s leadership style from the outset.

Credit: Number 10 / Jay Allen (Crown Copyright)
All British Prime Ministers end […]

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    UK general election preview: What to look out for as Britain goes to the polls

UK general election preview: What to look out for as Britain goes to the polls

The UK’s snap election on 8 June initially looked like being a comfortable victory for Theresa May and the Conservatives, but with the polls tightening in the last few weeks, there is now far more uncertainty about the outcome. We asked some of our contributors for their reflections on the campaign and the key things to watch out for […]

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    The Marshall Plan speech at 70 – and the lessons it can provide for today’s challenges

The Marshall Plan speech at 70 – and the lessons it can provide for today’s challenges

The 70th anniversary of the Marshall Plan speech given by US Secretary of State George Marshall on 5 June 1947 was recently celebrated. The speech outlined the principles of the Marshall Plan, under which the United States provided financial support to help rebuild Western Europe after the Second World War. Effie G. H. Pedaliu writes that while the conditions present […]

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    President Trump’s speech on the Paris Agreement was full of confusion and bogus claims

President Trump’s speech on the Paris Agreement was full of confusion and bogus claims

Donald Trump has indicated that he intends to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement. Bob Ward writes that the President’s speech put forward a confused interpretation of the agreement, included references to climate research that has previously been debunked, and gave a highly misleading account of the agreement’s impact on the United States’ coal industry.

Credit: Chairman […]

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Why has terrorism not been defeated so far?

The Manchester bombing was carried out by a young Briton from the Libyan community. Tahir Abbas asks what this means for the British government’s Prevent strategy, which is supposed to stop the radicalisation that can lead to terrorist attacks. He argues that the causes of radicalisation often lie in wider geopolitical issues and the mental health of young people – things […]

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    Kosovo’s early elections are reviving its ‘war’ and ‘peace’ camps

Kosovo’s early elections are reviving its ‘war’ and ‘peace’ camps

Kosovo is due to hold early elections on 11 June, following a vote of no confidence in the government. Krenar Gashi writes that the elections have encouraged a recalibration of Kosovo’s party system, with the revival of the division between so called ‘war’ parties and ‘peace’ parties that has its roots in the aftermath of the Kosovo War in […]

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Why populism is a threat to electoral integrity

Following the election of Donald Trump as U.S. President, a great deal of political commentary has focused on the rise of populism and its possible impact on Western democracies. Pippa Norris argues that populism heightens the risk of electoral malpractice in three distinct ways: by damaging public trust in democracy, by undermining international standards of electoral integrity, and by […]

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Eurovision 2017 was remarkable for its lack of politics

The build up to the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest was overshadowed by a dispute between Russia and Ukraine which resulted in Russia withdrawing from the event. Catherine Baker writes that despite this dispute, the show itself was largely free from the kind of political controversy that has emerged in previous years.

Credit: Федя Кузнецов (CC BY SA 4.0)
Eurovision 2017 was a […]

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    Understanding the campaign dynamics of the French presidential election

Understanding the campaign dynamics of the French presidential election

Now that the dust has settled on Emmanuel Macron’s victory in the French presidential election, what lessons can be derived from the campaign? Thomas Vitiello assesses both rounds of the election, highlighting the key campaign dynamics that ultimately shaped the result.

Credit: French Embassy in the United States (CC BY SA 2.0)
In French politics, there is a saying that “in […]

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    An atlas with a positive message for a European people united in diversity

An atlas with a positive message for a European people united in diversity

Dimitris Ballas, Danny Dorling and Benjamin Hennig present a series of maps drawn from their new ‘Human Atlas of Europe’ that illustrate how life expectancy, wealth, and other key variables differ throughout the continent. Their maps highlight that the real divides across Europe lie within states rather than between them, but also suggest a positive message: that Europe remains a […]

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    Projecting vote transfers in the second round of the French presidential election

Projecting vote transfers in the second round of the French presidential election

Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron have advanced to the second round of the French presidential election, but which candidate will supporters of losing candidates such as François Fillon, Jean-Luc Mélenchon and Benoît Hamon back in the run-off vote? Using updated polling, Alexandre Afonso illustrates where the votes are likely to go, with Emmanuel Macron standing to benefit most […]

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The UK’s snap election makes a softer Brexit more likely

Theresa May has announced plans to call a UK general election for 8 June. Tim Bale writes that there is little doubt about the result, with the Conservatives a long distance ahead of Labour in the polls. But if the election does deliver a large majority for May, it could make a ‘softer Brexit’ far more likely as she will be […]

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    Today’s referendum is the most critical vote in modern Turkish history

Today’s referendum is the most critical vote in modern Turkish history

Today, Turkey is holding a referendum on whether to approve constitutional amendments that would substantially increase the power of the country’s President. Soli Özel and Sezin Öney write that the result is bound to transform the country in one way or another, and that a Yes vote would effectively consign Turkey’s century old parliamentary system to history.

Credit: alexeyklyukin/flickr (CC […]

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    Turkish constitutional referendum preview: A polarised society at a crossroads

Turkish constitutional referendum preview: A polarised society at a crossroads

Turkey will hold a key referendum on 16 April over constitutional amendments that would substantially increase the power of the country’s President. Ilke Toygür previews the vote, writing that the outcome remains difficult to predict, with polls showing a tight race and many voters still undecided.

Ballot paper for the referendum, Credit: BirGün Gazetes
While the final countdown for the Turkish constitutional […]

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    Losing the Central European University would be a tragedy for Hungarian public life

Losing the Central European University would be a tragedy for Hungarian public life

Protests took place in Hungary on 9 April in support of the Central European University (CEU) in Budapest, which is under threat of closure due to new rules passed by the Hungarian Parliament. Michael Stewart argues that the government’s actions reflect Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s personal and ideological antipathy toward CEU’s founder, George Soros, and that the closure of […]

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