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Politics and International Relations Research Seminar

Contestation of democratic backsliding in the EU context: The Case of Hungary by Dr Eva Zemandl

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The literature on democratic backsliding in the European Union is growing and offers evidence of straightforward, mechanistic processes driven by the governments of some Eastern European member states.  This paper’s point of departure is that democratic backsliding must be captured within its proper social context, which importantly involves processes of contestation against the phenomenon

  • From: Wednesday 4 December 2019, 1 pm
  • To: Wednesday 4 December 2019, 2 pm
  • Location: CH2701, Chaucer Building, Goldsmith Street, Nottingham Trent University, NG1 5LS
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The literature on democratic backsliding in the European Union is growing and offers evidence of straightforward, mechanistic processes driven by the governments of some Eastern European member states. This paper’s point of departure is that democratic backsliding must be captured within its proper social context, which importantly involves processes of contestation against the phenomenon.

The roles of key non-state and sub-state actors in contestation need to be more closely examined. Moreover, it is indispensable to account for the European Union as a political and legal context which both enables and hinders contestation efforts. By analysing two most different cases in Hungary (central banking and segregation in education), this paper demonstrates that:

  1. the EU context offers little in bolstering the contestation efforts of local societal actors
  2. lack of effective contestation tactics against backsliding ultimately reinforces conditions conducive to further backsliding;
  3. but momentary, incremental and superficial challenges to backsliding are possible, and certain actors and institutional avenues can be potentially important windows of opportunity for contestation.

Dr Eva Zemandl is a Lecturer in Public Policy, Politics and International Relations in the Department of Politics and International Relations at Nottingham Trent University.

Location details

Address:

Chaucer Building
Goldsmith Street
Nottingham Trent University
NG1 5LS

Past event

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