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The Brexit-sized hole in the future EU budget

The UK is a net contributor to the EU budget. Following Brexit, the loss of UK contributions will therefore likely require either a reduction in overall spending, or for the remaining member states to pay more into the budget. Iain Begg explains the impact this shortfall might have as the EU seeks to negotiate its next Multi-annual Financial Framework.

Have you ever wondered […]

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    Why has no other European country adopted the Research Excellence Framework?

Why has no other European country adopted the Research Excellence Framework?

Most European countries have followed the UK’s lead in developing performance-based research funding systems (PRFS) for their universities. However, what these countries have not done is adopt the same system, the Research Excellence Framework being its most recent iteration. Instead, many use indicators of institutional performance for funding decisions rather than panel evaluation and peer review. Gunnar Sivertsen has examined systems […]

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    GroKo for Germany? How the prospect of a new grand coalition is dividing the country and the SPD

GroKo for Germany? How the prospect of a new grand coalition is dividing the country and the SPD

On 21 January, members of the German Social Democrats (SPD) will vote on whether to move to the next stage of talks over the formation of a grand coalition between the SPD and Angela Merkel’s CDU/CSU. Julian Göpffarth writes that much like the country as a whole, the SPD faces a choice between pragmatic politics and a rebellious yearning […]

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    Why immigration has the potential to upend the Italian election

Why immigration has the potential to upend the Italian election

The failure of Marine Le Pen and Geert Wilders to cause an upset in 2017 has prompted some observers to argue that Europe’s ‘populist right’ is now in retreat. But as James Dennison, Andrew Geddes and Matthew Goodwin highlight, the apparent fall in support for anti-immigration populism elsewhere in Europe has not been seen in Italy ahead of the […]

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How coherent is EU cybersecurity policy?

Recent security breaches at major companies and cyber-attacks such as the WannaCry ransomware attack have put cybersecurity firmly on the EU’s political agenda. But how coherent an actor is the EU in the field of cybersecurity? Drawing on a recent study, Andre Barrinha and Helena Farrand-Carrapico write that there remains a lack of cohesion in EU cybersecurity policy, with […]

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    ‘We don’t exist to them, do we?’: Why working-class people voted for Brexit

‘We don’t exist to them, do we?’: Why working-class people voted for Brexit

Working-class people were more likely to vote for Brexit. However, Lisa Mckenzie takes issue with the notion that these people were simply ‘turkeys voting for Christmas’. They saw Brexit, with all the uncertainties it would bring, as an alternative to the status quo. Deindustrialisation and austerity have taken a heavy toll on working-class communities – one which the middle-class often fails to grasp.

Credit: David […]

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We have seen the Alt-Right, but what about the Alt-Left?

Much has been written about the rise of the ‘Alt-Right’ and its role in American and European politics. However, the use of the term ‘Alt-Left’ remains far more contested. Steve Fuller writes that while the term is often used in a pejorative sense, there is the potential for left-wing actors to reclaim the Alt-Left label as part of a […]

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    Book Review: Building Better Societies: Promoting Social Justice in a World Falling Apart edited by Rowland Atkinson, Lisa Mckenzie and Simon Winlow

Book Review: Building Better Societies: Promoting Social Justice in a World Falling Apart edited by Rowland Atkinson, Lisa Mckenzie and Simon Winlow

In Building Better Societies: Promoting Social Justice in a World Falling Apart, editors Rowland Atkinson, Lisa Mckenzie and Simon Winlow make a moral case for the social sciences to challenge a prevailing neoliberal climate based around profit-making and individualism. The book’s central message — that the notion of the social needs to be reclaimed and restored for a better society — makes this a relevant and timely addition to […]

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    Democratic dynasties: Why are certain families successful in politics?

Democratic dynasties: Why are certain families successful in politics?

Are politicians with longer careers more likely to help their relatives and establish a political dynasty? Brenda Van Coppenolle considers this question in relation to the UK and by looking at the careers of members of the House of Commons since 1832.

Political dynasties play an important role in present-day democracies. Consider, for example, the Trudeaus, the Bushes, the […]

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    Is the European Parliament missing an opportunity to reform after Brexit?

Is the European Parliament missing an opportunity to reform after Brexit?

While Brexit negotiations are beginning to progress, the European Parliament is preparing to vote on the possible reallocation of seats following the UK’s departure. With many of the current proposals reflecting Member States’ concerns about losing seats, Robert Kalcik, Nicolas Moes and Guntram B Woolf advocate for options that could better achieve equality of representation even within the constraints […]

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    How will the European Commission triggering Article 7 affect Polish politics?

How will the European Commission triggering Article 7 affect Polish politics?

Last month Poland became the first EU member state to have an Article 7 rule of law procedure launched against it. Aleks Szczerbiak writes that while sanctions appear extremely unlikely, the domestic political impact will depend on whether Poles accept the opposition’s argument that the government is isolating Poland internationally, or the ruling party’s claim that it is defending […]

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    From online participation to offline consensus? The declining appeal of web-democracy to Five Star Movement supporters

From online participation to offline consensus? The declining appeal of web-democracy to Five Star Movement supporters

Beppe Grillo’s Five Star Movement has a lead in the opinion polls ahead of the Italian general election in March. As Davide Vittori and Margherita de Candia explain, one of the key features of the party’s rise to prominence prior to the 2013 general election was its use of online participation. However, they note that things have changed markedly […]

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    Granting Austrian citizenship to German-speaking Italians would not be a victory for South Tyrol’s separatists

Granting Austrian citizenship to German-speaking Italians would not be a victory for South Tyrol’s separatists

Austria’s new government has proposed to offer Austrian citizenship to German-speakers in the province of South Tyrol in Italy. Stephen J. Larin and Alice Engl argue that although the proposal has been welcomed by separatist parties in South Tyrol, it does not threaten Italy’s territorial integrity, and it would not have happened without the close relationship between the Austrian […]

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    Labour market institutions still matter for workforce equality in the knowledge economy

Labour market institutions still matter for workforce equality in the knowledge economy

The latter decades of the 20th century saw the rise of the so called ‘knowledge economy’ in Europe, with service sectors such as finance and telecommunications coming to dominate national economies. But these changes also occurred alongside a growth in income inequality across advanced democracies. As David Hope and Angelo Martelli highlight, many observers have assumed that the transition […]

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    The European Parliament is more representative of European citizens than we give it credit for

The European Parliament is more representative of European citizens than we give it credit for

Does the European Parliament adequately represent the views of European citizens? Drawing on a recent study, Miriam Sorace illustrates that while the Parliament is often criticised for being too distant from its voters, it is far more representative of the views of voters than commonly thought. Nevertheless, a lack of information about European election campaigns, as well as a […]

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    Book Review: Transnational Homosexuals in Communist Poland: Cross-Border Flows in Gay and Lesbian Magazines by Lukasz Szulc

Book Review: Transnational Homosexuals in Communist Poland: Cross-Border Flows in Gay and Lesbian Magazines by Lukasz Szulc

In Transnational Homosexuals in Communist Poland: Cross-Border Flows in Gay and Lesbian Magazines, Lukasz Szulc examines the emergence of Polish gay and lesbian magazines in the 1980s, challenging the perception of LGBT activism as a post-1989 discourse in Central and Eastern Europe. Drawing upon a diverse and rich array of resources, this is a fascinating and convincing study that suggests valuable avenues for […]

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    Brexit and fishing: How can the UK deliver a ‘successful’ fisheries policy after Brexit?

Brexit and fishing: How can the UK deliver a ‘successful’ fisheries policy after Brexit?

Halfway through the Brexit negotiations and delivering on the promises made to voters in the run up to the Brexit vote with regards to fishing remains an incredibly tough task. Richard Barnes, Chris Williams, Bryce Stewart, Bethan O’Leary, Thomas Appleby, and Griffin Carpenter write that ‘success’ for the UK will only be possible by working with its EU neighbours, and […]

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    The problem of feedback loops: Do opinion polls reinforce popular views?

The problem of feedback loops: Do opinion polls reinforce popular views?

Opinion polls are a vital tool for understanding what the public wants from its political representatives, but is there a danger that poll results can influence the views of citizens? As Sveinung Arnesen writes, one of the potential issues with polling is that people may change their attitudes after learning what others think. A disconcerting possibility is that opinion […]

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    Why ‘trickle down’ approaches to the social inclusion of minorities are unlikely to produce real change

Why ‘trickle down’ approaches to the social inclusion of minorities are unlikely to produce real change

Ethnic minority groups tend to have lower salaries and higher rates of unemployment in European countries, but how can this disparity be addressed through public policy? Licia Cianetti highlights that efforts to tackle the issue across Europe have come to be dominated by ‘trickle down’ approaches which view economic growth and job creation as the ultimate solution. She argues […]

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    Do centre-right parties win back votes from the far right by talking about immigration?

Do centre-right parties win back votes from the far right by talking about immigration?

With the rise of far-right parties in Europe during the 2000s, some centre-right parties spotted an opportunity to win back votes by pivoting towards immigration. James F Downes and Matthew Loveless find that they were more successful if they were out of government at the time. Incumbent centre-right parties, on the other hand, struggled to cut through on the issue.

City council election posters […]

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