3rd International Populism Conference in Prague

Current Populism in Europe and the Role of the Media

Keynote Speakers


Nadia Urbinati (Columbia University, New York)

Nadia Urbinati is a political theorist who specializes in modern and contemporary political thought and the democratic and anti-democratic traditions. She obtained her PhD at the European University Institute in Florence. Before coming to Columbia, Professor Urbinati served as visiting professor at New York University and the University of Pennsylvania, and as a lecturer at Princeton University. She also taught at the University UNICAMP in Brazil and was a visiting professor at the Scuola Superiore de Studi Universitari e Perfezionamento Sant'Anna of Pisa (Italy). She co-chaired the Columbia University Faculty Seminar on Political and Social Thought and founded and chaired the Workshop on Politics, Religion and Human Rights. She is co-editor with Andrew Arato of the journal Constellations: An International Journal of Critical and Democratic Theory. She is currently completing a monograph on the ideology of the anti-political and the critics of democracy.



Hanspeter Kriesi (European University Institute, Florence)

Hanspeter Kriesi is Professor of Comparative Politics at the European University Institute. He obtained his PhD in sociology at  the University of Zurich (1976), where he also did his Habilitation in sociology (1980).  In 1984 he became a professor for  collective political behaviour at the University of Amsterdam. In 1988, he went to the University of Geneva, where he taught as  a professor of comparative and Swiss politics until 2002, when he took up the chair for comparative politics at the University of  Zurich.  He was appointed to the Stein Rokkan Chair of Comparative Politics at the European University Institute (Florence) in  September 2012. His research interests are comparative politics, political sociology, political behaviour, electoral behaviour, political communication, political participation and social movements.


Wolfgang Merkel (Berlin Social Science Center)

Wolfgang Merkel is Professor of Comparative Political Science and Policy Research at the Humboldt University of Berlin, and serves as Director of the research unit on “Democracy and Democratization” at the Berlin Social Science Center (WZB). He obtained his PhD in political science at the University of Heidelberg. He habilitated in 1992 and two years later he became a professor of political science at the University of Mainz. In 2007 he was appointed as a member of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities. In 2016 he was Kennedy Memorial Policy Fellow at the Center for European Studies, Harvard University. His research fields are political regimes (democracy – dictatorships), democratization, political parties, social democracy and social justice.