current-affairs

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    How LGBT rights became a key battleground in Poland’s election

How LGBT rights became a key battleground in Poland’s election

LGBT rights have played a prominent role in the run-up to Poland’s election on 13 October. Lukasz Szulc writes that the ruling Law and Justice party has attempted to shore up its support by taking a harsh line on the issue, and while LGBT rights will probably not stay high on the party’s agenda after the election, it will […]

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    Bulgaria highlights the difficulties that lie ahead for Laura Kovesi as the EU’s chief prosecutor

Bulgaria highlights the difficulties that lie ahead for Laura Kovesi as the EU’s chief prosecutor

Laura Codruta Kovesi, the former chief prosecutor of Romania’s National Anticorruption Directorate, is expected to be approved as the new head of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office. Iveta Cherneva argues that the lack of media freedom in countries like Bulgaria will make it exceptionally difficult for Kovesi to uncover crimes involving EU funding.

When the news hit that Laura Kovesi […]

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    Why the radical right is no longer the exclusive domain of older, male voters

Why the radical right is no longer the exclusive domain of older, male voters

The typical radical right voter is often assumed to be older and male, with conservative views on women’s and LGBT rights. Drawing on a new study, Caroline Marie Lancaster writes that this assumption should now be reassessed. She finds evidence that there has been a particularly striking increase in the number of radical right voters who also support gender […]

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    Understanding the two faces of solidarity in the Eurozone and migration crises

Understanding the two faces of solidarity in the Eurozone and migration crises

The principle of ‘solidarity’ was a key feature of debates during the Eurozone crisis and the migration crisis, but the way in which the term was used differed in both cases. Drawing on a new study, Stefan Wallaschek explains that while the concept of solidarity is often assumed to be owned by actors on the left of the political […]

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    Can the liberals become the new pivotal political family of EU politics?

Can the liberals become the new pivotal political family of EU politics?

Ursula von der Leyen recently unveiled her proposed candidates for the next European Commission. Angelos Chryssogelos explains that one of the less observed features of the list was the empowerment of liberal politicians, continuing a trend toward a stronger liberal presence in EU decision-making. However, for the liberals to take on a central role in EU politics, they will need […]

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    The David Cameron memoirs: No apology, no atonement, no courage

The David Cameron memoirs: No apology, no atonement, no courage

In a new book, David Cameron details his time as UK Prime Minister and his reaction to losing the country’s referendum on EU membership. George Kassimeris writes that future historians are unlikely to be any kinder to Cameron than today’s political commentators, and his unwillingness to offer an apology for the turbulence that followed the referendum will do little […]

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    Is the EU headed for a ‘Southern Irish’ backstop in the case of a hard Brexit?

Is the EU headed for a ‘Southern Irish’ backstop in the case of a hard Brexit?

Some members of the UK government have hinted that the country may unilaterally refrain from introducing controls at the border with the Republic of Ireland in the case of a hard Brexit. Robert Basedow explains that if this were to occur, it would constitute a serious challenge for the EU and its single market. Customs authorities on the continent […]

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    Why trust in EU civil protection depends on trust in national institutions

Why trust in EU civil protection depends on trust in national institutions

A number of high profile crises and disasters have spurred the EU to expand its role in the field of civil protection. But little is known about whether national civil protection officials trust the EU institutions they work with and what the determinants of their views are. Drawing on a new study, Thomas Persson, Charles F. Parker and Sten […]

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    The ‘Brahmin left’ vs the ‘Merchant right’: A comment on Thomas Piketty’s new book

The ‘Brahmin left’ vs the ‘Merchant right’: A comment on Thomas Piketty’s new book

In a section of his latest book, Thomas Piketty attempts to chart how political competition has evolved in contemporary societies. Jan Rovny writes that although many of Piketty’s conclusions are not entirely original, they touch on important shifts that have taken place in recent decades. Among the most important is the reversing role of education in political alignment: while […]

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How ‘family-friendly’ are European countries?

Which European countries offer the most support to families? Yekaterina Chzhen, Anna Gromada and Gwyther Rees write that when all factors are considered, the Nordic countries, with their strong public spheres, are more supportive than those which elevate the family as a private institution.

Bringing up children can be seen as the sole responsibility of families or as a role […]

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    A sputtering car goes into reverse: The German recession and its consequences

A sputtering car goes into reverse: The German recession and its consequences

Heiner Flassbeck and Patrick Kaczmarczyk write that amidst global political and economic fragility, the downturn in the Germany economy adds to the uncertainty in a world that, as Paul Krugman put it, has a “Germany problem”. It not only raises questions and doubts over the future of the largest European economy but, more importantly, over the future of the […]

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    So, you want to buy 98 per cent of our territory? A Danish perspective on American-Danish-Greenlandic relations

So, you want to buy 98 per cent of our territory? A Danish perspective on American-Danish-Greenlandic relations

President Trump’s offer to buy Greenland reflects an increased American interest in the territory. As Jon Rahbek-Clemmensen writes, while Greenland will not be sold any time soon, complicated trilateral negotiations will commence, where Denmark will have to strike a balance between several pressures.

Although President Trump’s recent offer to buy Greenland from Denmark was always unlikely to succeed, the […]

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    Should the law intervene when politicians make discriminatory statements? Reflections from Brazil and the United Kingdom

Should the law intervene when politicians make discriminatory statements? Reflections from Brazil and the United Kingdom

If the employee of a large company makes a discriminatory statement, they typically face disciplinary consequences. Yet politicians not only have the freedom to make such statements, but can even be rewarded at the ballot box for doing so. Drawing on recent cases in Brazil and the UK, Javier García Oliva and Rafael Valim ask whether there is a […]

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    Young people and Brexit: The implications for the far-right and for Scottish independence

Young people and Brexit: The implications for the far-right and for Scottish independence

Since the EU referendum, the narrative of an inter-generational divide has emerged, with the country’s older pro-Leave generation thought to be at odds with a younger, pro-Remain generation. Rakib Ehsan investigated these intra-generational differences and suggests that failure to deliver Brexit may provide a boost for far-right organisations, but that a disruptive no-deal Brexit has the potential to inject considerable […]

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What to expect from Austria’s election

Austria will hold a parliamentary election on 29 September. The election was called following the collapse of the governing coalition between the Austrian People’s Party (ÖVP) and the Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ). Paul Schmidt previews the vote, explaining that awareness of the interlinkages between domestic and European politics and a relative rise in political interest will be two […]

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    Emotions have an important role in shaping support for EU cooperation on immigration and terrorism

Emotions have an important role in shaping support for EU cooperation on immigration and terrorism

The EU has pursued common policies on immigration and the prevention of terrorism. But what determines public support for this form of cooperation? As Cengiz Erisen and Sofia Vasilopoulou explain, factors such as an individual’s identity, employment status and level of education have previously been used to understand varying levels of support among citizens. However, drawing on a new […]

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    What the Faroe Islands can tell us about small states, autonomy and climate change

What the Faroe Islands can tell us about small states, autonomy and climate change

The Faroe Islands held a general election on 31 August. Lise Lyck writes that while the size of the population in the Faroe Islands is small, the islands are of wider significance, particularly given the environmental importance of the North Atlantic and renewed interest in the region following Donald Trump’s ‘offer’ to buy Greenland.

President Trump’s “offer” to buy Greenland […]

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    From one marriage of convenience to another: Will Italy’s new M5S-PD government last longer than its predecessor?

From one marriage of convenience to another: Will Italy’s new M5S-PD government last longer than its predecessor?

The Five Star Movement (M5S) and the Democratic Party (PD) have formed a new governing coalition in Italy. The coalition will allow both parties to avoid a snap election which Matteo Salvini’s League had hoped to trigger by collapsing the previous government. Davide Angelucci, Pierangelo Isernia, Gianluca Piccolino and Andrea Scavo write that given the ideological differences between the […]

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What next for Brazil-EU relations?

It has been a mixed summer for relations between Brazil and Europe. In June, the EU and the South American economic bloc Mercosur reached agreement on a free trade deal, but a diplomatic rift has since emerged between Brazil and France over the environment. Miriam Gomes Saraiva writes that implementing the EU-Mercosur agreement now rests on successfully balancing Brazil’s […]

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    Five things to know about Sunday’s elections in eastern Germany

Five things to know about Sunday’s elections in eastern Germany

The radical right Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) made large gains in the Brandenburg and Saxony state elections on 1 September. Manès Weisskircher highlights five takeaways from the elections, noting that while the AfD captured the headlines, there were several other important developments.

International media coverage has paid a lot of attention to the elections in Brandenburg and Saxony, two states […]

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