Round Up of 2020

It goes without saying that nobody could have predicted how 2020 eventually unfolded. It has been a tough year in all manner of ways for people right across the world, and for us in the Populism in Action team it forced a rethink of several aspects of our plans for the project. However, in the face of the adversity caused by the Covid-19 pandemic we have adapted our ways of working so as to continue studying and explaining how and why populist radical right parties in Western Europe invest a lot of time, effort and resources into building mass membership and supporter organisations. Along the way we have produced analysis across both print and video explaining what we have found out, and the bearing that it has upon current affairs, in a succinct and accessible way. Now as we approach the end of 2020 and the rest of the decade stretches tentatively ahead of us we are delighted to share a selection of these with you.

Enjoy having a look back at what we have done to disseminate some of our findings this year – we wish you good health and comfort over the festive period and throughout 2021.

January – March

The first few months of 2020 – much like the last quarter of 2019 – saw our research team using their expertise and knowledge to produce incisive analysis of European current affairs.

Where Luigi Di Maio and Italy’s Five Star Movement Went Wrong – by Mattia Zulianello


Italy’s Government Still On A Knife Edge After Key Regional Elections – by Daniele Albertazzi and Davide Pellegrino


The Swiss People’s Party Looks for a New Leader – by Adrian Favero

Why Europe’s Populist Radical Right Parties Are Not Eager to Leave the EU – by Stijn van Kessel


March – June

When Covid-19 first began shutting down countries, our research team produced a series of analyses looking at how the Flemish, Swiss, Italian and Finnish populist radical right parties under study reacted to the public health emergency:

June – September

As life across Europe settled into a tentative wait for effective treatments and successful vaccines, our research team turned its attention to exploring some of the long-term trends that our research is examining.

A Starter Library on Populism – by Adrian Favero, Niko Hatakka, Judith Sijstermans, Mattia Zulianello


A “Great Identity Crisis” Complicates Belgium’s Colonial and Racial Reckoning – by Judith Sijstermans


Right-Wing Populism Across Europe – PiAP’s First Video Series

-This series of short films consists of in-depth discussions between members of the project team. Our researchers focus on key issues around the political parties we are studying, by looking at their communication strategies, membership organisation, strategic approaches and political objectives.

September – December

Despite the continued wait for effective public health measures and treatments to end the pandemic the latter part of the year saw the Populism in Action team engaged in a number of significant initiatives aimed at disseminating the projects’ research findings.

PiAP-Clinton Institute Webinar: Comparing Populisms – Daniele Albertazzi and Stijn van Kessel


Populism in Europe and the USA – Webinar Recording – Daniele Albertazzi and Scott Lucas


Populism and Sub-State Nationalism Intersect in Belgium’s Flanders – Judith Sijstermans


Launch of the new Populism in Action Project website


Thank you for following our research and engaging with us this year. Its been quite a ride but we look forward to sharing and discussing more of our findings with you in 2021. Wishing you a happy, healthy and prosperous festive period and an excellent year to come – onwards and upwards.