LSE Comment

This section showcases articles from LSE academics, students and alumni which have appeared on EUROPP – European Politics and Policy.

A new take on ‘whatever it takes’?

Outgoing ECB President Mario Draghi recently expressed support for a closer fiscal union in the Eurozone, including cross-border fiscal transfers. As Iain Begg writes, these statements have reinvigorated the debate between advocates for risk sharing and proponents of risk reduction. Draghi’s predecessor, Jean-Claude Trichet, has defended Draghi and his proposals against criticism from other former central bankers, but resistance […]

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    The US-China trade war: Risks and opportunities for the EU and the United Kingdom

The US-China trade war: Risks and opportunities for the EU and the United Kingdom

The trade war between the United States and China has already had an impact on European economies. And as Robert Basedow explains, with the conflict centred on global economic and political leadership, it is unlikely to be resolved in the foreseeable future. This will create important challenges and opportunities for both the EU and the UK in the coming […]

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    Polish election recap: A victory for Law and Justice, but the party may find governing more difficult than before

Polish election recap: A victory for Law and Justice, but the party may find governing more difficult than before

Law and Justice won Poland’s election on 13 October, increasing their vote share and maintaining a majority in the lower house of the Polish parliament, the Sejm. However, as Aleksandra Sojka explains, the party may nevertheless find itself in a weaker position following the loss of its majority in the upper house, the Senat.

On 13 October, the dominant […]

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    Why the EU should open accession negotiations with Albania and North Macedonia

Why the EU should open accession negotiations with Albania and North Macedonia

The EU is expected to make a decision this week on whether to open accession negotiations with Albania and North Macedonia. Frank Schimmelfennig and Ulrich Sedelmeier explain that EU enlargement policy has suffered from diminished credibility, both in terms of the EU’s promise of membership and its willingness to implement sanctions for non-compliance. The decision over Albania and North […]

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    How the European Union’s Court of Justice may end up having the last word over a hard Brexit

How the European Union’s Court of Justice may end up having the last word over a hard Brexit

If the UK fails to secure a Brexit deal with the EU by the end of this month, then it is obliged under the so-called Benn Act to request an extension to the process. But what if the government manages to bypass the Benn Act and take the country out of the EU without a deal? Robert Basedow explains that […]

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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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    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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    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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Book Review: The Politics of Land edited by Tim Bartley

In The Politics of Land, editor Tim Bartley brings together contributors to highlight the significance of the neglected issue of land to political sociology. This is a highly informative volume that explores a range of issues related to the land-politics nexus beyond the top-down understanding of its role in capitalist accumulation with much potential for future sociological research, writes Alexander Dobeson. 
The Politics of […]

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    How informal groupings of like-minded states are coming to dominate EU foreign policy governance

How informal groupings of like-minded states are coming to dominate EU foreign policy governance

When the Lisbon Treaty came into force in 2009, many observers anticipated the newly established High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, together with the European External Action Service, might facilitate greater unity and coherence in EU foreign policy. Drawing on evidence from the EU’s role in the Middle East Peace Process, Federica Bicchi and Lisbeth Aggestam illustrate […]

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    Post-Brexit trade policy must serve British society, not just free trade

Post-Brexit trade policy must serve British society, not just free trade

Brexit provides an opportunity to agree new Economic Partnership Agreements with the world’s largest economies such as the US, China, and India. These cannot make up for the trade it will lose through leaving the Single Market, according to Swati Dhingra and Josh De Lyon. Nevertheless, the UK has an opportunity to forge a new generation of trade deals that […]

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Five transport policies that could build thriving cities

One of the key roles of transport planners in large cities is to ensure that high levels of mobility are maintained while traffic congestion is kept to a minimum. Sarah Colenbrander and Catarina Heeckt write that accessibility within cities hasn’t become better despite urban planners’ best efforts. Creative solutions are needed to create better interconnected and concentrated cities.

Over the […]

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    Most trade in services happens between cities rather than countries

Most trade in services happens between cities rather than countries

Services, as opposed to goods, may provide the opportunity for trade diversification that the world is seeking. Saul Estrin and Daniel Shapiro write that facilitating trade in services, particularly knowledge-intensive ones, will require developing strong global cities as trade hubs.
Many countries have begun to think about trade diversification. After all, one of the reasons for Brexit was to allow […]

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The impact of job loss on political ideology

Do citizens alter their political ideology when they lose their job? Drawing on data from the Netherlands, Dingeman Wiertz and Toni Rodon find that – if anything – people revise their ideology to the left upon becoming unemployed.

What happens to citizens’ political preferences when they are confronted with economic hardship? This longstanding question has recently attracted renewed attention in […]

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    Why EU states are converging on restrictive migration policies, despite their different political traditions

Why EU states are converging on restrictive migration policies, despite their different political traditions

Differing political cultures and migration traditions among EU member states have given rise to a variety of national policy approaches toward irregular migration. Nadia Petroni explains that while in principle this diversity hinders agreement on common asylum and migration policies, EU member states are now increasingly converging toward more restrictive migration policies.

National policy approaches are deeply rooted in historical […]

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    The European elections generated real momentum for renewable energy – it’s time for MEPs to rise to the occasion

The European elections generated real momentum for renewable energy – it’s time for MEPs to rise to the occasion

The EU has set a target of generating at least 20% of its total energy needs through renewables by 2020. Anar Ahmadov writes that given the success of Green parties in May’s European Parliament elections, there is now real momentum in the push toward renewable energy transition. But a number of resilient obstacles remain and there is a clear […]

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Greek elections: The view from across Europe

Greece held legislative elections on 7 July. The preliminary results indicated New Democracy had won a majority of seats, with Syriza in second place. Stuart Brown presents an overview of analysis and reactions from across Europe.

“As if the four years of Syriza had not existed, traditional politics has imposed itself again on Athens”

El País describes the result as the “end of […]

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    Outlook for Italy: Fiscal policy and instability in the government remain key sources of risk

Outlook for Italy: Fiscal policy and instability in the government remain key sources of risk

Lega finished a sizeable distance ahead of their coalition partners, the Five Star Movement, in the recent European elections. Dennis Shen writes that although Lega’s leader, Matteo Salvini, has stated he has no intention of pushing for snap elections in the short-term, the prospect of instability in the current coalition, as well as a deteriorating fiscal picture, will be […]

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    The 2019 European Parliament: the far right International is here – when will the left wake up?

The 2019 European Parliament: the far right International is here – when will the left wake up?

The political forces most hostile to European integration are also the only ones to have formulated a common vision for Europe, writes Lea Ypi. Now is the time to bring the various local social justice campaigns together, and put them at the service of a renewed political project.

As Marine Le Pen, Matteo Salvini, Geert Wildeers and other far-right leaders […]

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    Financial crises and the dynamics of financial de-liberalisation

Financial crises and the dynamics of financial de-liberalisation

Financial crises play a key role in changing existing policies concerning financial markets and institutions. Orkun Saka, Nauro Campos, Paul De Grauwe, Yuemei Ji and Angelo Martelli provide new evidence for the negative impact of financial crises on the process of financial liberalisation. They also show that such interventions are only temporary and that the liberalisation process restarts quickly […]

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