Populism and Citizenship in the European Union: Beyond Supply-and Demand-Explanations

The article „Populism and Citizenship in the European Union: Beyond Supply- and Demand- Explanations“  by EEGA Fellow Stefan Telle was published in the e-Journal „Connections“.

The paper argues that existing supply- and demand-explanations of populism neglect the political process as a source of popular dissatisfaction. Alternatively, the paper develops the argument that historical transformations of statehood may lead to misalignment between citizens’ expectations and lived experience regarding their rights, duties, and compliance obligations toward authority. Republican citizenship is presented as the outcome of historical processes of nation-building, while liberal citizenship is underlying the process of European integration. The paper illustrates the transformation of civic, political, and social rights by economic and political liberalization in the European Union. It introduces the concept of “cityzen” to stress the increasing importance of urbanity for exercising citizenship rights. Based on the re-framed understanding of populism developed in the paper, some speculative arguments on how to address the populist challenge in the EU are presented and a promising avenue for future research is highlighted.

You can read the article here.