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    Five minutes with Katharina Borchert: “Online advertising has created a surveillance economy”

Five minutes with Katharina Borchert: “Online advertising has created a surveillance economy”

The growth of online communication has raised important questions about privacy, free speech and the governance of the internet. In an interview for EUROPP, Katharina Borchert, the former CEO of Spiegel Online and current Chief Innovation Officer at Mozilla, discusses the pressing need for data protection online, and why tech companies have a responsibility to prevent the exploitation of […]

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    Only public dialogue can resolve Poland’s judicial reform crisis

Only public dialogue can resolve Poland’s judicial reform crisis

New disciplinary procedures for Polish judges have generated a sharply polarised response from Polish citizens. The reforms are part of a wider judicial reform programme the ruling Law and Justice party has implemented since coming to power in 2015. Anna Matczak argues that while politicians often cite public opinion when making their case for or against the reforms, there […]

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    Britain needs friends in the post-Brexit era. Alienating EU allies would be counter-productive

Britain needs friends in the post-Brexit era. Alienating EU allies would be counter-productive

Amid the posturing about trade, the fact that Britain no longer has a voice in the EU has gone largely unremarked, writes N Piers Ludlow. He warns that alienating European allies by talking tough risks harming the UK’s soft power and long-term interests.
At the heart of Edward Heath’s speech winding up the so-called ‘Great Debate’ in October 1971, when the Commons […]

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    Lessons from another extraordinary general election in Ireland

Lessons from another extraordinary general election in Ireland

Sinn Féin won the highest share of the vote at Ireland’s general election on 8 February. As Conor Little explains, the late surge in support for the party was so unexpected that it failed to run enough candidates in the election to fully capitalise on its popularity. The resulting volatility, fragmentation and polarisation will make coalition negotiations challenging, and […]

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Introducing eastern Germany’s far-right intellectuals

On 5 February, Thomas Kemmerich of the Free Democratic Party (FDP) was elected as Minister President of Thuringia with the help of the Alternative for Germany (AfD). Sabine Volk explains that the incident, which has generated a heated reaction in Germany, highlights the role of far-right groups in shaping public debate in eastern Germany.

Following the AfD’s coup in Thuringia […]

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What are the prospects for the Polish Peasant Party?

The unexpected success of Poland’s agrarian-centrist party in last autumn’s parliamentary election suggests that there could be a niche for a moderate conservative-centrist grouping among voters uncomfortable with the country’s right-wing ruling party and liberal-left opposition, writes Aleks Szczerbiak. But, critics argue, in spite of its changing electorate and apparently more open political style, the agrarian party remains a […]

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    Book Review: The Bourdieu Paradigm: The Origins and Evolution of an Intellectual Social Project by Derek Robbins

Book Review: The Bourdieu Paradigm: The Origins and Evolution of an Intellectual Social Project by Derek Robbins

In The Bourdieu Paradigm: The Origins and Evolution of an Intellectual Social Project, Derek Robbins explores the intellectual and social background informing the development of the theoretical perspective, or theory-as-method, of Pierre Bourdieu. Given the increasing application of Bourdieu’s theoretical tools across the social sciences, this book is a timely addition to scholarship, writes Ross Goldstone. 
The Bourdieu Paradigm: The Origins and Evolution of […]

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    A political economy forecast of Ireland’s 2020 general election: Will the government lose fewer seats than expected?

A political economy forecast of Ireland’s 2020 general election: Will the government lose fewer seats than expected?

Irish voters will go to the polls today for a general election. Michael S. Lewis-Beck and Stephen Quinlan outline a new forecast model which suggests that Leo Varadkar’s Fine Gael will lose seats, but perhaps fewer than opinion polls currently suggest.

Irish voters head to the ballot box today. According to recent national opinion polls, we are on the cusp of a seismic shift, […]

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    Far-right, populist or bourgeois? How the election of Thuringia’s regional governor shakes up German politics

Far-right, populist or bourgeois? How the election of Thuringia’s regional governor shakes up German politics

The election of liberal politician Thomas Kemmerich as regional governor of the German state of Thuringia has shaken up German politics. Julian Göpffarth writes that the surprise vote shows far-right ideas in Germany not only resonate with the economically left-behind, but also with an educated bourgeoisie.

Wednesday, 5 February 2020 is likely to enter German post war history as a […]

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Brexit and the liberal elephant trap

Given the success of populist politicians across Europe, some pro-Europeans have openly wondered whether they should adopt the same tactics as populist parties to make the case for European integration. Michael Cottakis argues that this would be a mistake. To reverse the trend, pro-Europeans must quit dabbling in populism and instead play to their strengths by promoting dialogue and […]

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    Azerbaijan’s snap election: a real contest or business as usual?

Azerbaijan’s snap election: a real contest or business as usual?

Azerbaijan will hold a snap parliamentary election on 9 February. Arzu Geybullayeva explains that although there is little expectation the vote will be genuinely free and fair, there is a sense that this election could constitute a break with the past given the visibility of new candidates. However, it remains to be seen whether this will translate into real […]

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    What would it take for Scotland to rejoin the EU as an independent state?

What would it take for Scotland to rejoin the EU as an independent state?

If Scotland voted for independence, it would probably apply to rejoin the EU. Despite its unique history, it would have to follow the normal path to EU accession, says Anthony Salamone. Scots are not keen on the euro and fisheries would be a flashpoint. While the Scottish government would be well-advised not to seek opt-outs of the kind the UK […]

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The implications of Brexit for the UK economy

The United Kingdom has now formally left the European Union, but what does the future hold for the British economy? Following a recent event at LSE, Gerard Lyons, Vicky Pryce and John Van Reenen took questions from LSE staff, students and members of the public on the economic impact of Brexit.

A lot of the focus on the economic impact […]

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    How populist radical right parties have eroded the EU’s human rights agenda in the Mediterranean

How populist radical right parties have eroded the EU’s human rights agenda in the Mediterranean

It is often assumed that populist radical right parties will support disengaging from the European Union by default. Adrià Rivera Escartin writes that although many of these parties do support disengaging from the EU, there is the potential for a different approach to be adopted in future which might be termed ‘informal and illiberal Europeanisation’. Italy’s capacity to shape […]

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Book Review: Resist: Stories of Uprising edited by Ra Page

In Resist: Stories of Uprising, editor Ra Page brings together contributors to offer an anthology of short stories and critical essays that narrate a rich counter-history of resistance in the UK, spanning from the Boudicca Rebellion to the protests in response to Grenfell Tower. Positioning fiction as a radical medium, this is a valuable book that will be of particular interest to participants and scholars […]

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    If Poland’s government believes in ending discrimination, it should reassess its conception of Polish identity

If Poland’s government believes in ending discrimination, it should reassess its conception of Polish identity

In recent years, a march has been held in Poland to mark the country’s independence. While the event is viewed as an opportunity to remember those who died in the process of establishing the Polish state, it has also faced allegations of racism and xenophobia. Bolaji Balogun argues that in light of these debates, it is worth examining how ethnic […]

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    Who gets the blame? How policymakers in the EU shift responsibility when things go wrong

Who gets the blame? How policymakers in the EU shift responsibility when things go wrong

EU membership provides ample opportunities for politicians at the national level to shift blame for unpopular decisions to the EU’s institutions, while EU-level actors also have an incentive to blame national politicians when things go wrong. Drawing on a new study, Tim Heinkelmann-Wild explains how these blame-avoidance processes function in practice.

When EU policies are publicly contested, policymakers try […]

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    Public intellectuals and experts cannot tell citizens what to do

Public intellectuals and experts cannot tell citizens what to do

How should academics approach their roles as public intellectuals in light of decreasing trust in experts and growing need for their expertise? Peter J. Verovšek argues there is a need to ensure the strategic competition for media power does not destroy the quality of public debate that is necessary to maintain a functioning representative democracy. Academics should view themselves as guardians of the […]

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    Trust spillovers: Does increasing public trust in the EU’s institutions undermine support for national institutions?

Trust spillovers: Does increasing public trust in the EU’s institutions undermine support for national institutions?

Several studies have identified a link between the public’s trust in national institutions and their trust in the EU’s institutions. Yet the effect of this link is unclear, with some studies finding that an increase in trust in national institutions boosts trust in the EU’s institutions, and other studies identifying the opposite relationship. Drawing on a new study, Goran […]

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    Understanding the key factors that lead countries to reform their pension systems

Understanding the key factors that lead countries to reform their pension systems

Faced with ageing populations and strains on their public finances, many countries across Europe have endeavoured to reform their pension systems, yet these reforms have varied substantially in their content and aims. Leandro N. Carrera and Marina Angelaki present findings from a novel study of eight European countries to highlight the key factors that lead countries to undergo significant […]

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