Current Populism in Europe and the Role of the Media

The conference takes place under the auspices of H.M. Tomáš Zima, the Rector of Charles University


Conference programme


Monday, 22 May

9:00 – 9:45     Registration


9:45 – 10:00   Opening of the Conference:

                               Berthold Franke (Director, Goethe-Institut Czech Republic)

                               Eva van de Rakt (Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung e.V. in Prague)

                               Martin Mejstřík (Charles University)


10:00 – 11:45  Morning Session: Populism, antipolitics and the role of the media

Chair + discussant: Hanspeter Kriesi (EUI Florence)

Yannis Stavrakakis (Aristotle University, Thessaloniki)

Populism as discourse: Performative mediation and the populism/anti-populism divide

Donatella Campus (University of Bologna)

Pop politics and antipolitics as communication styles for contemporary leadership

Mats Ekström (University of Gothenburg)

Right-wing populism and the news media: A cross-cultural study of populist performances, journalist practices and news discourse


11:45 – 12:45   Lunch


12:45 – 13:45   Keynote Paper

                         Nadia Urbinati (Columbia University, New York)

                         Direct Representation: Populism in the Age of Audience Democracy


13:45 – 15:30   Afternoon Session I: ‘The people’ as a key concept of populism

Chair + discussant: Ben Stanley (SWPS Warsaw)

Emilia Palonen (University of Helsinki)

Debating Populism: beyond demography and institutionalisation

Simona Guerra (University of Leicester) and Evangelos Fanoulis (Metropolitan University, Prague)

Crisis and emotions: citizens’ Eurosceptic perceptions and populist narrative unpacked

Antonio Momoc (University of Bucharest)

Populism 2.0 and the new “enemies of the people”


Afternoon Session II: Brexit populist discourse and the involvement of the media

Chair + discussant: Václav Štětka (Loughborough University)

Marius Guderjan (Humboldt University, Berlin)

‘Brexit populism’ – Causes and Consequences

Marzia Maccaferri (Goldsmith, University of London)

Brexit as post-partisan populism? Brexit discourse and the role of the media before and after the referendum

Franco Zappettini (Royal Holloway, University of London)

Power to the people? Mediatizing populist ideologies in the Brexit campaign

Federico Giulio Sicurella (University of Rome Tor Vergata)

In dialogue with populists: a study of intellectual discourse about populism in the Brexit debate in Italy and the UK


15:30 – 16:00             Coffee Break



16:00 – 16:15           Opening of the Public Part of the Conference

                                  Berthold Franke (Director, Goethe-Institut Czech Republic)

                                  Jan Royt (Vice-Rector, Charles University)

                                  Eva van de Rakt (Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung e.V. in Prague)


16:15 – 17:00            Keynote Paper

                                  Wolfgang Merkel (WZB Berlin)

                                  Illiberalism and Populism in East and West


17:00 – 17:15            Coffee Break


17:15 – 17:30            Presentation of the book “Populism in time of crisis” and the special issue of the Czech Journal of Political Science


17:30 – 19:15            Evening Discussion: Populism and Media in Central Europe

                                  Chair: Václav Štětka (Loughborough University)

                                  Anna Frenyó (journalist, Hungary and Germany)

                                  Ricardo Gutiérrez (European Federation of Journalists)

                                  Ondřej Houska (Hospodářské noviny)

                                  Wojciech Przybylski (Visegrad Insight)


19:15                         Reception




Tuesday, 23 May

9:00 – 9:30     Registration


9:30 – 10:15   Keynote Paper

                       Hanspeter Kriesi (EUI Florence)

                       Revisiting the populist challenge


10:15 – 10:30  Coffee Break


10:30 – 12:15  Morning Session I: Post-communist populism in CEE countries

Chair + discussant: Timofey Agarin (Queen’s University, Belfast)

Ben Stanley (SWPS Warsaw)

Voting Populist or Just Voting for Populists? A Comparative Analysis of Populist Attitudes and Vote Choice in Central and Eastern Europe

Emilia Zankina (American University, Sofia)

Populist Radical Right Parties and the Impact on Policy-Making in Bulgaria

Dimitar Nikolovski (Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw)

Macedonia: A Tale of Two Populisms

Attila Bartha (Hungarian Academy of Sciences and IBS Budapest)

Survival Populism: Discursive Governance in Hungarian Public Policy


Morning Session II: The USA and the world in the era of post-truth

Chair + discussant: Peter Učeň (political analyst, Bratislava)

Jérome Jamin (University of Liege)

Populism in the United States

Bohdan Szklarski (University of Warsaw)

How populism ends – a lesson from America?

Attila Antal (Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest)

Populism and Climate Change in the Era of Post-Truth

Anne-Kathrin Weber (Justus Liebig University, Giessen)

The Relation between Populism and Arendtian Totalitarianism


12:15 – 13:15  Lunch


13:15 – 15:00  Afternoon Session I: Populist discourse in Germany and Italy in comparative perspective

Chair + discussant: Donatella Campus (University of Bologna)

Giorgia Bulli (University of Florence)

Old and new populist countries: Italian and German populism

Tim Henrichsen and Gianluca Piccolino (Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa)

The Public Discourse on the Refugee Crisis and the Role of Populists: Evidence from Germany and Italy

Roberto De Rosa (Tuscia University, Viterbo) and Dario Quattromani (Roma Tre University)

Populist or Representative Deliberation? Discourses and Contents in the 2016 Italian Constitutional Reform Process

Anna-Maria Schielicke and Julia Hoffmann (TU Dresden)

Media Criticism within PEGIDA – Profound or Instrumental?


Afternoon Session II: The mainstreaming of populism and party competition

Chair + discussant: Robert Sata (CEU Budapest)

Marta Lorimer (London School of Economics and Political Science)

”Ni droite, Ni gauche, Français!" Mainstream populism and the future of Left/Right politics

Yiannos Katsourides (University of Cyprus) and Elena Pachita (Bowling Green State University)

Normalizing Populist Right Rhetoric: the Case of Cyprus

Caroline Dalmus (University of Fribourg)

Between Polarization and Democratic Duty: How do Competing Parties engage with Populist Issues?

Dominika Kasprowicz (Jagiellonian University, Krakow)

Social Experiment as a Method of Estimating Effects of Populist Communication


15:00 – 15:15 Coffee Break


15:15 – 17:00 Evening Session I: Illiberal democracies in Hungary and Poland compared

Chair + discussant: Olga Wysocka (Adam Mickiewicz Institute)

Pál Tamás (Corvinus University, Budapest)

Governance in contemporary Central European populism: ability/non-ability to change of Hungarian and Polish regimes

Attila Ágh (Corvinus University, Budapest)

The “populist explosion” in the West and its effect on the CEE: The Polish and Hungarian populist blind alley compared

Ladislav Cabada (Metropolitan University, Prague)

Anti-modernity as a significant characteristic in the rhetoric of populist politicians and media: the cases of Poland and Hungary

Karolina Gawron-Tabor (University of Torun)

Comparative analysis of the activities of the Hungarian Fidesz and the Polish Law and Justice after coming to power


Evening Session II: Left and Right-wing Populism in Iberian Peninsula

Chair + discussant: Vlastimil Havlík (Masaryk University, Brno)

Alexandros Kioupkiolis (Aristotle University, Thessaloniki)

Reflexive technopopulism: Podemos and the search for new left-wing hegemony

Irene Esteban (University of Milan) and Irene Martin (Autonomous University of Madrid) 

Is there a hidden populist right in Spain?

Juan Rodríguez-Teruel and Oscar Barberà (University of Valencia)

‘The state against the people’: the populist drift and political mobilization in the Catalan independence movement

José Santana Pereira (University of Lisbon)

No country for populists? The mismatch between the populist media environment and the weak electoral appeal of populists in Portugal


17:00 – 18:45  Final Session: Right/left wing populism and relationship with the media

Chair + discussant: Alena Kluknavská (Masaryk University, Brno)

Giuliano Bobba (University of Turin) and Cristina Cremonesi (University of Pavia)

The Rise of Populism on Facebook. A Comparative Analysis of Party Communication in France, Italy, and Spain

Věra Stojarová (Masaryk University, Brno)

Populist (Radical Right) and media ring in Visegrad countries

Piotr Podemski (University of Warsaw)

Populism in Old and New Europe: Ideology and the Media in the Five Star Movement and Kukiz’15

Léonie de Jonge (University of Cambridge)

The Populist Right and the Media in the Benelux: Friend or Foe?


18:45 – 19:00 Concluding Remarks