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Winter Term 2019/20

Lecture: Introduction to European Integration

Course Description

European integration has had major consequences for European societies, politics, and policy-making. The lecture gives a thorough overview of the history of the integration process and the current state of the European Union (EU). Specifically, the students will get to know the basic institutional features of the EU and the major theoretical approaches used to explain the level and scope of integration. Also, the lecture puts a spotlight on debates over the politicization of Europe, the decline of citizens’ support, and the multiple crises faced by the EU in recent years. The students will advance their understanding of the political and social implications of European integration as an important background for their further studies of contemporary European societies.

Basic Readings

Cini, Michelle and Nieves Pérez-Solórzano Borragán (eds.) (2019). European Union Politics. Seventh Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Lelieveldt, Herman und Sebastiaan Princen (2015). The Politics of the European Union. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


Research Placement: Conflicts in the public sphere: Approaches to quantitative content analysis of media texts

Course Description

The research placement focuses on different approaches to quantitative content analysis and their use in understanding the transformation of protest and electoral politics in Europe. The research placements makes a methodological and a substantive contribution. From a methodological perspective, the students will learn to read, understand and interpret the results of scientific research utilizing protest event, core sentence, and contentious episode analysis. The students will also learn to apply at least one of these approaches in their own research. From a substantive perspective, the course focuses on the transformation of political conflict in contemporary European societies. More concretely, the literature we will read examines changing cleavages in the electoral and protest arenas, cross-arena mobilization by political parties in protest and movements in electoral politics, as well as differences between old and new democracies. The students can choose their topics of interest related to these major transformations, but need to apply one of the three types of quantitative content analysis listed above. The participants need to have good knowledge of at least one statistical program (preferably Stata).

Basic Readings

Hutter, Swen. 2014.“Protest Event Analysis and its Offspring.” In: Methodological Practices in Social Movement Research, edited by Donatella della Porta, pp. 335–67. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Hutter, Swen and Hanspeter Kriesi (eds.) (2019). European Party Politics in Times of Crisis. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.