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Roundtable: Assessing the Study of Populism

March 21, 2022 @ 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm

Roundtable: Assessing the Study of Populism


Hans-Georg Betz, University of Zurich

Paul Taggart, University of Sussex

Nonna Mayer, Sciences Po


According to the media and political pundits, populism is often seen as a recent phenomenon. As populism researchers, we know, however, that this is not the case. Populist parties began to emerge within the European context in the late 1980s and in the early 1990s. Not surprisingly, it was also during this period that research on populism began to increase. These early works on populism, by the likes of Hans-Georg Betz, Paul Taggart and Nonna Mayer, have now become important foundational texts for the study of populism.

Since these early years, the study of populism has exploded, ranging from the study of voting behaviour, populists in power, gender, environment and foreign policy, to name just a few. In short, our theoretical and empirical understanding of populism has expanded and deepened.

Looking back at the development of the study of populism in the last 30 years, several important questions come to mind:

  • Should we see the recent explosion of research on populism as positive?
  • Do we really know more about populism now than 20 years ago?
  • Has the nature of populism changed and do we need new theories or methods to fully understand populism?
  • What is the future of populism and the study of populism?

In this roundtable, we ask three of the most renowned scholars on populism to reflect on questions such as these. Along with Hans-Georg Betz, Paul Taggart and Nonna Mayer, we will assess the past, present and future of the study of populism.





March 21, 2022
12:30 pm - 1:30 pm


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