What is the relationship between agency and institutional change? Does the former lead to the latter, when and how? And what impact does this have on inequality? Probing these questions, alongside many others, is Professor Klarita Gërxhani, Chair in Sociology at the EUI’s Department of Political and Social Sciences, who joined the faculty at the […]
The Arab Spring, beginning in 2010 with the Tunisian revolution, was a period of revolutionary transformation for the North Africa region. Its participants rejected the authoritarian rule of the postcolonial era and reclaimed their city streets and squares to demand meaningful political emancipation. Some commentators have hence identified parallels between the decolonisation struggles of the […]
Healthcare has emerged as a political hot-potato for European societies, especially as economic troubles have levied strain on its funding. In the UK, the National Health Service (NHS), which provides free and universal healthcare at the point of access, is considered a veritable institution in itself, inextricably bound up with the post-war humanitarian ideals it […]
In its relatively short history, the European Union has been no stranger to dissenting voices, and they don’t come much more vociferous than Jerome Roos. The fourth year SPS researcher at the EUI is examining the Greek debt crisis in comparative-historical perspective― “The basic question I seek to answer is why heavily indebted peripheral countries […]
These are called intergovernmental forums. They operate outside the traditional EU framework and have raised serious questions about legitimacy and transparency. But over time these disparate forums have slowly and quietly crept out of the shadows and into public life, becoming noisy actors on the European stage. So why are groups that were designed to stay backstage becoming so conspicuous? One man who might know the answer is Lewis Miller, a British researcher in the department of political and social sciences.
How can robust and dependable welfare states be maintained in diverse societies? It sounds as if it shouldn’t be a problem, but many are now starting to worry that multiculturalism has inadvertently undermined the foundations of our shared sense of responsibility. “This has been called the progressive’s dilemma” says Professor Will Kymlicka, “that there has to be a trade-off between recognition of diversity and the welfare state.”
The purpose of academic research is to pursue a cold and clinical objective truth, but many researchers who find themselves delving deep into the crux of a political issue are driven by a profound sense that something is wrong with the status quo and that something ought to be done about it. And yet, there is a widespread stigma against ‘activist research’ which is often considered biased. Meanwhile many believe there is also something slightly deceptive about concealing a strongly held conviction. So somehow, a balance must be struck.
Since the Arab Spring started in 2010, those living in the countries around the edge of Europe have endured unprecedented levels of political and economic uncertainty that has, across the region, resulted in bloodshed and instability. As violence escalated in North Africa and the Middle East, populist anti-immigration rhetoric has steadily proliferated throughout Western European politics in the wake of the Eurozone debt crisis. This has created a political landscape hostile to any kind of pro-immigration legislation and fostered a desire for each country to protect its own narrow economic and social interests.