After eight good years at the University of Antwerp (2002-2010) I have resigned my position and emigrated to the USA to join my wife; I do continue to work with my one remaining PhD student as a guest professor (gastprofessor
) in Antwerp. I am now an assistant professor in the Department of International Affairs
of the University of Georgia
in Athens, Georgia (USA). I can be reached at: mudde[at]georgia.edu.
Most of my publications can be downloaded here
- Comparative politics
- European politics (East and West)
- Parties and party systems
- Methods and research design
- Political extremism
Current research interests:
- Populism in Europe and Latin America
- Defending Liberal Democracies
- Political Ideologies
- US conservatism in comparative perspective
- Contested concepts and comparative data sets
- The relationship between (un)civil society and democracy/democratization
Current and former PhD students (all at the University of Antwerp):
- Jan Jagers, "De stem van het Volk! Populisme als concept getest bij Vlaamse politieke partijen", PhD awarded in February 2006 (freelance journalist/lecturer Erasmus Hogeschool Brussel
- Sarah De Lange
, "From Pariah to Power: Explanations for the Government Participation of Radical Right-Wing Populist Parties in West European Parliamentary Democracies", PhD awarded in June 2008 (assistant professor University of Amsterdam
- Sivan Hirsch-Hoefler, "Settle for Nothing: The Mobilization Strategies of the Israeli Settlement Movement", PhD awarded in December 2008 (visiting assistant professor IDC Herzliya
- Lien Warmenbol
, "Wijken voor het VB: een
etnografische studie van het succes van radicaal-rechtse populistische
partijen op buurtniveau", PhD awarded in June 2010 (non-academic job).
- Joz Motmans
"Op brakke grond: leven in de marges van gendertheorie en sociale
bewegingen. Casestudie: de Vlaamse transgenderbeweging", PhD awarded in
December 2010 (post-doc Steunpunt Gelijke Kansen
at the University of Antwerp).
- Natalya Krasnoboka
, "Testing the Limits of the Possible: Media Logic in Transition Societies", PhD expected in Summer 2013.
- Kristian Voss, "The Protection of the Environment in Western Europe: Political Ecology and the Ideology of Far Right Political Parties", PhD student at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy (external supervisor).
I am the founder and former convener of the ECPR Standing Group on Extremism & Democracy, and founder and former co-editor of the Routledge Studies in Extremism & Democracy book series, which has published almost fifteen books under my tenure, on topics such as terrorism in the US, extremism and terrorism, freedom of speech, and extreme right activists. I serve or have served on the Editorial Boards of Acta Politica, Comparative Political Studies, Democracy and Security, European Journal of Political Research, Patterns of Prejudice, Politics in Central Europe, Politics, Religion & Ideology (formerly Totalitarian Movements and Political Religions), and The Journal of Politics.
I have published two single-authored books. My most recent book Populist Radical Right Parties in Europe was published by Cambridge University Press in September 2007. It is out in both hardback and paperback. The book addresses three main aspects of (the study of) populist radical right parties in both parts of Europe: conceptualizations, issues, and explanations. It was awarded the XIIIth Stein Rokkan Prize for Comparative Social Science Research (2008) by the ISSC/ECPR and was named Outstanding Academic Title by Choice in 2008.
In September 2009 Political Studies Review
, the reviews journal of the British Political Studies Association published a symposium on the book with contributions by Matthew Goodwin
(University of Manchester), Paul Lucardie
(Rijksuniversiteit Groningen), and Andrej Zaslove (University of Nijmegen). So, far the book has been reviewed in the following academic journals (in brackets the most flattering quotes, obviously taken out of context):
* e-Extreme, Vol.9, No.1, 2008
("a milestone in the study of the contemporary radical right")
* The Journal of Politics, Vol.70, No.2, April 2008, pp.561-2
("a benchmark for future studies of the radical right")
* Choice, Vol.45, No.3, May 2008
("Overall, a very thorough, careful, insightful, and impressive work")
* Perspectives on Politics, Vol.6, No.2, June 2008, pp.407-9
("a major work offering an indispensable road map for future research on populism and right-wing politics in contemporary Europe")
* Political Studies Review, Vol.6, No.3, September 2008, pp.393-4
("invaluable to any scholar or student working within this field")
* Acta Politica, Vol.43, No.4, December 2008, pp.501-3
("the most stimulating book published on this much-researched topic since [Kitschelt & McGann 1995]")
* The Review of Politics, Vol.71, No.1, Winter 2009, pp.157-9
("an impressive piece of work that fulfills the goal Mudde initially set forth for the book")
* "It's not Hemingway, but for grad school fare it's fascinating." (Ivan on GoodReads)
In 2012 my co-edited volume (with Cristóbal
) Populism in Europe and the Americas: Corrective or Threat for Democracy?
was published in hardback by Cambridge University Press
. A paperback version will be published next year, while Epikentro
will publish a Greek edition.
I have further (co-)edited with Andreas Schedler
, Mexico City) the mini-symposium "Measurement Matters: Empirical Implications of Data Selection in Comparative Politics" for Political Research Quarterly
(Vol.63, No.2, June 2010) and with Renske Doorenspleet
(University of Warwick) and Petr Kopecky
(Leiden University) the special issue "Deviant Democracies: Democratization Against All Odds" for Democratization
(Volume 15, No.4, October 2008). I also (co-)edited five other books: Racist Extremism in Central and Eastern Europe
(Routledge, 2005), (with Roger Eatwell
) Western Democracies and the New Extreme Right Challenge
(Routledge, 2004), (with Petr Kopecký) Uncivil Society? Contentious Politics in Post-Communist Europe
(Routledge, 2002), and (both with Joop van Holsteyn
) Democratie in verval?
(Boom, 2002), and Extreem-rechts in Nederland
I have recently published three articles: (with Erin Jenne
) "Hungary's Illiberal Turn: Can Outsiders Help?", Journal of Democracy
(Vol.23, No.3, 2012); "Euroskepticism, "Sussex vs. North
Carolina: The Study of Party-Based Euroskepticism", East European Politics
(Vol.28, No.2, 2012); and "Should We Fear the Populist Radical Right in Europe?" for Dissent
(Fall 2011). Among my forthcoming publications are an entry on "Neoconservatism" for the Encyclopedia of Modern Political Thought
, a chapter on "Populism" (with Cristóbal
) for the Oxford Handbook on Political Ideologies
, and an entry on "Right-Wing Movements" (with Sivan Hirsch-Hoefler) for the Blackwell Encyclopedia on Social and Political Movements
. I am also working on a four-volume reader on Political Extremism
for Sage (SAGE Major Works series) and a reader on Youth and the Extreme Right
for the Open Society Institute
Current research projects:
After a variety of different smaller projects on various topics, including conservatism, democratization and Euroskepticism, I have returned to a variety of larger projects within two broad fields: comparative politics and political methodology. All are long-term interests and I intend to work on aspects of them over the coming years, both in collaborations and alone.
Obviously, my interest in the phenomenon of populism is grounded in my earlier work on the radical right. However, in current work I go well beyond the constraints of my previous work. First and foremost, I look at populism in all its guises; left, right and center, movements and parties, democratic and undemocratic. Second, I go beyond the European boundaries, focusing also on populism in the Americas, i.e. North and South America. Third, I focus more explicitly on the ambivalent relationship between populism and democracy (and democratization), trying to tease out under which conditions populism can be least threatening (or even most conducive) to (liberal) democracy and the process of democratization. Concretely, this larger research agenda consists of several bigger and smaller sub-projects (almost all with with Cristóbal Rivera Kaltwasser) focusing on the relationship between populism and democracy, gender, and leadership. The final goal is a co-authored book On Populism, which will provide a basic understanding of the key actors, ideas, leaders, and
theories of populism. Unlike earlier attempts, it will present a clear
definition of populism (see Mudde 2004, 2007), and will
focus in particular on the complex relationship between populism and democracy. The
primary intended audience are students and scholars, but the
book will also be accessible to interested non-academics.
Islamophobia in Western Democracies:
This project investigates Islamophobia in contemporary western societies, in particular
Western Europe and North America. It aims to develop a comprehensive assessment of the
role of Islamophobia in contemporary western politics. Topics that are to be addressed
include: (i) what role does Islamophobia play in the (domestic and foreign) policies of
western states?; (ii) what are the effects of Islamophobia on western societies; (iii)
what effects does Islamophobia have on political alliances within and between western
Defending Democracies: Liberal Democracies and the Extremist Challenges of the 21st Century:
How can liberal democracies defend themselves against extremist challenge(r)s without undermining their liberal democratic values?
This essential struggle within liberal democracies was a prominent theme in political science in the mid of the last century, not in the least because of the influence of European refugees in American political science (notably Karl Loewenstein). After decades of being hardly discussed, except in some countries that were dealing with terrorist threats in certain periods of time (e.g. Germany and Italy in the 1970s), the terrorist attacks of 9/11 and the consequent 'War on Terror' brought the topic back to the center of attention. However, while virtually everyone focused on the most extreme challenges and reactions, i.e. terrorism and counter-terrorism, few people discuss the key question in a broader context. Building upon a previous typology of extremist challenges
, this project will analyze the way liberal democracies around the world deal with different types of extremist challenges in both an empirical and normative way. The aim is to come to best practices that help liberal democracies defend themselves without undermining their core values.
While a single-authored book is the the ultimate aim of this project, I am currently developing several articles on specific aspects and organizations. Most notably, I am working on the radical animal rights movement, in particular the Animal Liberation Front (ALF).Political Methodology:
Roughly stated, I am interested in everything that takes place between theory development and the actual analysis of data. In other words, my main concerns are conceptualization, operationalization, and data selection; aspects of political methodology that receive too little attention in contemporary (quantitative) political science. In the coming years I hope to develop various larger projects on these aspects of political methodology, mostly through the IPSA Committee on Concepts and Methods
Conceptualization, Operationalization and Measurement in Political Science (COMPS)
Questions of conceptualization, operationalization, and measurement and crucial to political science, not only to quantitative political science. Unfortunately, very little theoretical attention is given to it. Moreover, much of the intellectual work that is done on these issues never make it into the journals and published books, as editors will consider these secondary at best, irrelevant at worst. Consequently, much knowledge is lost, and people are forced to invent the wheel over and over again. The prime aim of COMPS is to set up an infrastructure to share information on these issues and to publish good work on conceptualization, operationalization, and measurement. At the moment, I am looking into a variety of options (from journal to website) as well as a variety of partners (with APSA, ECPR, IPSA).
Long-term side project:
In the coming years I will also be working (on and off) on a monograph, provisionally entitled Oi! The Politics, which will analyze the main political positions expressed in Oi! music. Oi! is a music genre that is difficult to define and delineate; some even argue it is the commercial invention of one man, Garry Bushell. It is sometimes described as skinhead music, street punk, or working class punk. Among the major Oi acts of the heydays (roughly the 1980s) are bands like Angelic Upstarts, Cockney Rejects, Cock Sparrer, and Sham 69, and "people's poets" like Attila the Stockbroker and Gary Johnson. The book will focus mainly on the political views of British Oi acts in the explosive period of the late 1970s and 1980s with political events like the miners strike and Margaret Thatcher's "iron rule".