Old versus New Politics: The Political Spaces in Southern Europe in Times of Crises.

with Hanspeter Kriesi and Guillem Vidal. Party Politics, 24(1) 2018: 10-22


This paper focuses on the party political spaces in four Southern European countries (i.e., Greece, Italy, Spain, and Portugal) since the onset of the Euro crisis. To understand the emerging conflict structures, it argues for the need to consider that these countries simultaneously face an economic crisis and a political crisis, and that both crises have strong domestic and European components. Moreover, the major driving forces of change tend to be social movements and political parties that forcefully combine opposition to austerity and to ‘old politics’. This leads to a complex conflict structure shaped by struggles over austerity and political renewal. In this structure, divides over economic and political issues are closely aligned with each other. While this pattern emerges everywhere, there are distinct country differences. Empirically, the paper relies on original data from a large-scale content analysis of national election campaigns in the four countries in the period 2011 to 2015.


Party competition, Southern Europe, economic crisis, political crisis, new left


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