Workshop 2: Populism and Democracy

Organized by Anders Ravik Jupskås, Department of Political Science

Populist parties are increasingly becoming a major political force in many liberal democracies. While such parties were initially dismissed as a short-lived vehicles of protest, as single-issue-oriented, ideologically extreme, and un-coalitionable parties, they have at least since the mid-1990s become increasingly electorally successful, ideologically cohesive, organizationally institutionalized, and politically influential. Today many postindustrial states seem to be characterized by a populist Zeitgeist or populist challenge.

However, there are extensive disagreements as to how profound the impact of populist parties really is and the extent to which these parties truly have become institutionalized political actors. Are these parties still dependent upon their charismatic and/or media-savvy leaders? Have populist parties been able to change any key principles governing contemporary liberal democracies? And in what ways, if any, have liberal democracies been able to integrate populist parties into the existing political system, including political decision-making processes and public debates? To what extent are other parties, voters or the mass media becoming more susceptible to the populist message?

This workshop welcomes all kinds of papers - theoretical, normative, quantitative and/or qualitative - that deal with populist parties and how they relate to (liberal) democracy.

If you want to participate at this workshop, please contact Anders Ravik Jupskås.

Workshop schedule


Title of paper or presentation

Session 1

(Thursday, 13.30-15.30)


Kirk Hawkins

The Impact of Populism on Liberal Democracy

Jussi Westinen

The Finnish Cleavage Structure and the True Finns Effect

Cathrine Thorleifsson Moe

Sliding toward autocracy: The challenge of the radical right to liberal democracy in post-communist Hungary

Session 2

(Thursday, 16.00-18.00)


Paul Taggart

Populisms in Contemporary Western Europe

Sorina Soare

How populist parties organize in post-communist Europe: A comparative analysis of Bulgaria, Moldova and Romania

Andrej Zaslove

Measuring Populist Attitudes: a people-centered notion of political representation?

Session 3

(Friday, 11.00-13.00)


Koen Vossen

Protecting the people against the masses. Populism and technocracy in the early years of mass-democracy

Peter Söderlund and Elina Kestilä-Kekkonen

Electoral gains and losses of right-wing populist parties and electoral volatility in Western Europe

Teun Pauwels

Ten theories on the rise of populism: a critical review

Session 4

(Friday, 14.00-16.00)


Hans-Jörg Trenz and Asimina Michailidou

Media populism in the context of the current crisis

Peter Ucen

Anti-Populism and Democracy

Anders Ravik Jupskås

Persistence of Populism: The Case of the Norwegian Progress Party

Published Sep. 15, 2015 9:21 AM - Last modified Nov. 4, 2015 11:24 AM