Beginning with a request for an EU-wide analysis of the Populist Radical Right in 2011, this project area has grown considerably since then. FEPS has been asked to present various elements of this research before Members of the European Parliament and events in Romania, Finland, Germany, Italy and Belgium. Recent elements of the project have included the book The Changing Faces of Populism: Systemic Challengers in Europe and the US" as well as the third issue of the FEPS magazine Queries which focused on the issue of “Facing Democratic Malaise”.

Research team

David Kitching – FEPS

Stefano Rizzo – CRS

Nicola Genga – CRS

Hedi Giusto – Italianieuropei

Sofia Vasiliopoulou – York University

Daphne Halikiopoulou – Reading University

Matthew Goodwin – Nottingham University


  • Conference of PES Secretary Generals (Berlin, October 2011) – Presentation of findings of the research paper ‘Facing Down the Far Right in Europe: a challenge for progressive politics’
  • S&D External Group meeting (Bucharest, July 2012) – Presentation of FEPS research to over 150 MEPs.
  • Meeting on “Populism and Political Parties in Europe” (Rome, July 2012) with Italianieuropei and the Centro per la Riforma dello Stato. This formed the basis for further research programmes including The Changing Faces of Populism.
  • Defying the Crisis: Impulses for Active European Citizenship (Rome, July 2013) – Presentatino to the European Network of Political Foundations
  • Democratic Legitimacy and Accountability in the EU (Dublin, July 2013) – David Kitching was invited to address the Oireachtas (Irish Parliament) Joint Committee on European Union Affairs
  • Democratic Malaise and Populist Growth (Rome, March 2014) – Fringe event of the Party of European Socialists Congress
  •  David Kitching was invited to speak at the Congress of the European Seniors’ Organisation (Brussels, April 2014)
  •  Europe’s Tea Parties? An interactive workshop (Brussels, October 2014) – In collaboration with Counterpoint

Research and policy related output

Why UKIP and the Radical Right Matter for Progressives – Matthew Goodwin & Robert Ford

Queries Magazine Issue III: ‘Facing Democratic Malaise: a challenge for a political union’

The Changing Faces of Populism: Systemic Challengers in Europe and the US – Hedwig Giusto, David Kitching & Stefano Rizzo

Democratic Legitimacy and Accountability in the EU: Address to the Oireachtas Joint Committee on European Union Affairs – David Kitching

‘Defying the crisis – Impulses for active European Citizenship’: Address to the European Network of Political Foundations – July 2013.

‘Facing Down the Far Right in Europe’ – David Kitching. September 2011

‘Rocky Road: ’On the Political Origins and Consequences of the Crisis in Ireland – David Kitching. November 2010


Selected background material

Albertazzi, D. and McDonnell, D. Twenty‐first century populism: The spectre of Western European democracy, Palgrave/Mac‐ millan, Basingstoke/New York, 2007.

Arditi, B. “Populism or, politics at the edges of democracy”, Contemporary Politics, vol.9(1), 2003.

Arzheimer, K. ‘Contextual Factors and the Extreme Right Vote in Western Europe, 1980-2002’, American Journal of Political Science, Vol. 53, No. 2 (Apr. 2009), 259-275.

Betz, H.‐G. and Immerfall, S., New Politics of the Right: Neo‐ Populist Parties and Movements in Established Democracies, Macmillan, Basingstoke, 1998.

Breuilly, J. (1993), Nationalism and the State, Manchester: Manchester University Press.

Day, G. and Thompson, A, (2004) "The 'Challenge of Globalization': Between Nationalism and Globalism" from Day, Graham and Thompson, Andrew, Theorizing Nationalism, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, pp.169-190.

Ford, R. & Goodwin, M. (2014) Revolt on the Right: Explaining Support for the Radical Right in Britain, London: Routledge.

Golder, M. “Explaining Variation In The Success Of Extreme Right Parties In Western Europe”, Comparative Political Studies, 36(4), 2003.

Goodwin, M.J. (2010) ‘Activism in Contemporary Extreme Right Parties: The Case of the British National Party (BNP)’, Journal of Elections, Public Opinion and Parties, 20:1, 31-54. Guibernau, M. (2001), ‘Globalisation and nationalism’, in M. Guibernau and J. Hutchinson (eds.) Understanding Nationalism, Cambridge: Polity.

Guibernau, M. ‘Migration and the rise of the radical right: social malaise and the future of mainstream politics’, Policy Network (March 2009).

Hainsworth, P. The extreme right in Western Europe, Routledge, Abingdon/London, 2008.

Halikiopoulou, D., Mock, S. and Vasilopoulou, S. “The civic zeit‐ geist: nationalism and liberal values in the European radical right”, Nations and Nationalism, 19(1), 2013.

Hewitt, R. White Backlash and the Politics of Multiculturalism, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2005.

Houwen, T. Reclaiming power for the people. Populism in democ‐ racy, UB Nijmegen, Enschede, 2013.

Ignazi, P. “The extreme right in Europe: A survey”, in P. Merkl and L. Weinberg, editors, The revival of right‐wing extremism in the 1990s, Frank Cass, London, 1997.

Ionescu, G. and Kellner, E., editors, Populism; Its Meanings and National Characteristics, Weidenfeld & Nicholson, London, 1969

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Hoffman, S., (2000) "Nationalism and World Order" from Goldmann, K. et al (eds.), Nationalism and Internationalism in the Post-Cold War Era, London: Routledge

Jesuit, D.K., Paradowski, P.R. and Mahler, V.A., ‘Electoral support for extreme right-wing parties: a sub-national analysis of western European elections’, Electoral Studies, 2009, (28), 279-90.

Judt, T. (2010), Ill Fares the Land: A Treatise on Our Present Discontents, London: Allen Lane

Kitschelt, H. and McGann, A.J. The radical right in Western Europe: a comparative analysis, University of Michigan Press, Ann Arbor, 1995.
Krastev, I. “The Populist Moment”, Eurozone, 2007.

Laclau, E. La Razòn populista, Buenos Aires, 2005; Eng. transl. On Populist Reason, Verso, London, 2005.

Lipset, S.M. Political Man: The Social Bases of Politics, Doubleday, New York, 1960.

Kohn, H. (1955), Nationalism: its Meaning and history, Princeton, N.J.: Van Nostrand

Mudde, C. (2000) The Ideology of the Extreme Right, Manchester: Manchester University Press

Mudde, C. “The Populist Zeitgeist”, Government and Opposition, vol. 39, 2004.

Mudde, C. (2009) Populist Radical Right Parties in Europe, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press

Rokkan, S. and Lipset, S. M. “Party Systems and Voter Alignments: Cross‐National Perspectives” in International Yearbook of Po‐ litical Behavior Research, Free Press/Macmillan, New York/ London, 1967.

Rooduijn, M. A Populist Zeitgeist? The Impact of Populism on Parties, Media and the Public in Western Europe, unpublished doctoral dissertation, Universiteit van Amsterdam, Amsterdam 2013.

Rosenblum, N.L., editor, "The Liberalism of Fear," in Liberalism and the Moral Life, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 1989.

Sprague-Jones, J. (2011) ‘Extreme right-wing vote and support for multiculturalism in Europe’, Ethnic and Racial Studies, 34:4, 235-555.

Stanley, B., “The thin ideology of populism”, Journal of Political Ideologies, vol. 13(1), 2008.

Taggart, P. Populism, Open University Press, Buckingham/Phila‐ delphia, 2000.

Vasilopoulou, S. Euroscepticism and the radical right: domestic strategies and party system dynamics, Unpublished PhD Thesis, 2010.

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Zaslove, A. (2009) ‘The Populist Radical Right: Ideology, Party Families and Core Principles’, Political Studies Review, 309-318.