Recent Submissions

  • Sustaining Significance of Confessional Form: Taking Foucault to Attitudinal Research

    Dolezal, Krystof; Department of International Relations (Copenhagen Business School, 2023)
    This paper offers a conceptual reconstruction and empirical case study of an often-eclipsed concept of Michel Foucault’s genealogical project, confession. Departing from Foucault’s dictum that his core research interest rests in the experience of the subject, I argue that, without a detailed understanding of diverse modalities of the confessional form, various subjectivation processes and epistemological procedures could not be fully grasped. In the first part, I systematise Foucault’s incoherent confessional account against the backdrop of his entangled genealogies of modern man and the human sciences. Subsequently, I introduce a case study of a quantitative attitudinal survey based on face-to-face interviews to test Foucault’s model of confession in present-day circumstances and demonstrate its sustaining analytical significance by disclosing the cognitive technique of coding behaviour. Thus far, governmentality studies have confronted positivistic methods in social sciences to display their objectifying functions. In contrast, I use the technique of coding behaviour to immerse into these scientific practices. Such a perspective delivers a fine-grained exposure of epistemological strategies in social sciences that are enabled by the appropriation of the confessional model and that constitute subjective identities on an individual and mass scale.
  • The Artemis Accords

    Bartóki-Gönczy, Balázs; Nagy, Boldizsár; Department of International Relations (Cambridge University Press, 2023)
    The Artemis Accords (the Accords) reproduced below were signed on September 13, 2020, by the administrator of the U.S. space agency, NASA, and seven other space agencies. The intervening years since then have underscored their importance: they may give a boost to the development of the legal regime of outer space exploration and use as defined by the existing treaty framework, while supporting the U.S. interpretation of the non-appropriation principle, or they may upset the existing legal regime of Outer Space, leading to its fragmentation by abandoning multilateralism. This introductory note highlights those aspects of the Accords that may affect the edifice of the international law relating to Outer Space, even if the Accords themselves are not legally binding, as explained briefly below.
  • Challenging the Notion of the East‐West Memory Divide

    Toth, Mano; Department of International Relations (Wiley, 2019)
    Recent scholarly works on memory practices in Europe often appeal to the notion of the East-West memory divide or, more dramatically, to the European memory wars which have been allegedly raging at least since the Eastern enlargement of 2004. These terms are supposed to stand for the heated debate between the East and the West, between the countries on the opposing sides of the former Iron Curtain, about what the appropriate memory for Europe should be. In this article, I challenge this simplistic division and I argue that it completely disregards the role of agency. In contrast, I conduct an agent-centred empirical analysis and show that the social actors involved in the debate are far more diverse, the fault lines are far less clear and the sides of the debate are far more heterogeneous than the carelessly used notion of the East-West memory divide would have us believe.
  • The affirmative power of presence through absence, online

    Strausz, Erzsébet; Department of International Relations (Taylor & Francis, 2021)
  • Writing with Foucault: Openings to transformational knowledge practices in and beyond the classroom

    Strausz, Erzsébet; Department of International Relations (Taylor & Francis, 2022)
    This article engages questions of authority and authorship in the discipline and the IR classroom, driven by a search for affirmative horizons within critical scholarship and academic practice. Prompted by a series of ‘failures’ attached to the social and disciplinary performance of ‘expertise’ in the context of violent conflict, I explore the practice of writing as it unfolds from Michel Foucault’s lesser cited essays and interviews as a generative, creative resource. I follow Foucault in breaking down the normalised perceptions of the ‘author function,’ revealing writing as an act that diagnoses, discovers, and potentially transforms writer, reader and the social structures that the writing addresses. Foucault’s experimental ethos brings to light the complex life worlds of sense-making through the vehicle of writing. It also invites us to embrace the transgenerational heritage that quietly structures our relationships to knowledge together with the multiple selves that arise and are co-present in the text. I enter such processes of negotiation and transgression in Foucault’s work and my own writing through a series of vignettes, which aim to actualise the ‘method’ these gestures may harbour for making ‘uncommon sense’ and re-inhabiting research and pedagogical practice as continuous, self-reflexive and self-authori(zi)ng journeys.
  • Mandate management: A field theory approach to the EBRD’s adaptive practice in Egypt

    Piroska, Dóra; Schlett, Bálint; Department of International Relations (Taylor & Francis, 2023)
    The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) was created in the early 1990s to promote the transition to a market economy and advance democracy in the post-communist countries of East Central Europe. How and why did this international organization, established for an entirely different purpose, then become an active investor in Egypt? Building on field theory, we explain the EBRD’s move to Egypt as an attempt to overcome the hysteresis effect of its anachronistic operational logic (habitus) within a changing field. Once in Egypt, the EBRD aspired to leverage its symbolic capital of technical assistance, democratic commitment and the privileging of the private sector. However, given Egypt’s increasingly autocratic and state capitalist evolution, it found delivering on its symbolic capital problematic. Its solution was to adapt to the very active European development finance field’s modalities. However, the European field’s logic ultimately de-prioritized democracy, human rights promotion, and poverty reduction and instead focused on sustainable investment, migration mitigation and containing Europe’s geo-economic rivals. In our case study, we demonstrate that the EBRD operated deftly within this field, while it also gained permission and even reward for its mandate management. It is a problematic finding for the future of the EU development policy.
  • Macroprudential Policy on an Uneven Playing Field: Supranational Regulation and Domestic Politics in the EU's Dependent Market Economies

    Piroska, Dóra; Gorelkina, Yuliya; Johnson, Juliet; Department of International Relations (Wiley, 2021)
    Central bankers and financial regulators in East Central Europe and the Balkans regularly employed macroprudential policy before the global financial crisis and continue to be among its most active proponents in the European Union. We draw upon the Dependent Market Economy framework to explore how the EU's five DMEs – the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, and Slovakia – have used macroprudential policy to manage the uneven distributional effects of financial globalization and European integration. We contend that while structural and EU-specific institutional factors define the available policy space, policy choices within that space depend upon how domestic actors translate macroprudential policies into their local contexts. Overall, our analysis highlights the social impact and challenges to European integration of heavy DME reliance on macroprudential policy making, especially when motivated by domestic financial nationalism.
  • New European Banking Governance and Crisis of Democracy: Bank Restructuring and Privatization in Slovenia

    Piroska, Dóra; Podvršič, Ana; Department of International Relations (Taylor & Francis, 2020)
    The paper makes three contributions to the understanding of the post-crisis European banking governance. First, it offers a more comprehensive approach to banking governance, beyond the Banking Union, through its concept of ‘New European Banking Governance’ (NEBG) that incorporates EU state aid rules and fiscal regulations. Second, it considers the impact of NEBG on democratic institutions and processes in EU member states, an under-researched topic in the literature on European banking governance. Finally, through its in-depth case study of Slovenia it considers the NEBG in relation to peripheral Eurozone states. It argues that the post-crisis banking governance framework of the EU not only severely constrained the Slovenian state in its policy choices but rearranged its policy-making institutions in a way that restricted and continues to restrict democratic banking policy formation.
  • From Financial Crisis to a Crisis of Interpellation: Unpacking Ideology Production in the European Union and Clarifying How Its Failures Affect Foreign Affairs

    Merlingen, Michael; Department of International Relations (Taylor & Francis, 2018)
    We identify an ideology gap in the Marxist EU (European Union) literature, which we then set out to narrow by identifying and analysing core elements of the particularising EU version of the global ideology of feel-good and ethical capitalism through which the EU interpellates certain subaltern classes towards identifying with the deepening and widening of neoliberal governance. We then show, by means of discourse analysis, how ideological state apparatuses (ISAs) secure but also occasionally undermine the ideological bloc of dominant and dominated classes. We conclude by arguing that the ideological dimension of EU foreign policy is becoming increasingly important as the EU’s self-ascribed status as a uniquely normative power in world politics offers multiple opportunities for ISAs to obscure the reality of a materially increasingly polarised EU whose internal structure has acquired pronounced imperialist properties during the recent financial crisis. This does not harbour well for international order in Europe and beyond.
  • Is Nationalism or Ethnopopulism on the Rise Today?

    Jenne, Erin K.; Department of International Relations (Taylor & Francis, 2018)
  • Varieties of Nationalism in the Age of Covid-19

    Jenne, Erin K.; Department of International Relations (Cambridge University Press, 2022)
    In the lead article of this symposium, Florian Bieber predicted that the Covid-19 pandemic would have limited long-term effects on the global rise in the level of nationalism because most governments were likely to revert to their prior nationalist trajectories following the pandemic. Nonetheless, I argue that we can learn something about the role of nationalism in the management of public health crises by looking at the variable state responses to the arrival of the virus within their borders. In the modern international system, state governments are tasked with safeguarding the health and well-being of their national populations. During national emergencies, sovereigntist movements form around competing images of the nation that deserves protection. This article uses political artwork to show how different images of the idealized sovereign community were employed to justify divergent pandemic policies of US President Donald Trump and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. Over the course of the pandemic, both leaders came under fire for failing to protect their constituents, providing space for alternative leaders and models of national protection.
  • Grounded Nationalisms over Time, Territory, and the State

    Jenne, Erin K.; Department of International Relations (Cambridge University Press, 2023)
    Grounded Nationalisms: A Sociological Analysis has become an instant classic in nationalism studies. In just over 300 pages, Siniša Malešević, one of the world’s leading nationalism scholars, has constructed a rich treatise on some of the central questions of our day: How should we think about nationalism? What is the future of nationalism? And what accounts for the ubiquity of national identities and national identification long after the so-called Age of Nationalism ended?
  • External Border Control Techniques in the EU as a Challenge to the Principle of Non-Refoulement

    Goldner Lang, Iris; Nagy, Boldizsár; Department of International Relations (Cambridge University Press, 2021)
  • Rebuilding the Hungarian right through conquering civil society: The Civic Circles Movement

    Greskovits, Béla; Department of International Relations (Taylor & Francis, 2020)
    The article analyses the Civic Circles Movement that paved the way for Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz party from the opposition to enduring political rule. It is demonstrated that through extending and connecting the right’s grassroots networks and hierarchical organisations, reinventing its holidays and heroes, and mobilising followers for contention, the movement has transformed civil society. The article contributes to the recent literature on illiberal parties and leaders by showing that the civic activism of educated middle-class supporters may be as important for their rise and resilience in power as the votes of less educated groups within their constituency.
  • Unorthodoxy in Hungary: An illiberal success story?

    Csaba, László; Department of International Relations (Taylor & Francis, 2019)
    This paper offers a political economy perspective of Hungary under the Orbán regime (2010–18). What specific variety of capitalism emerged from the series of centralising measures pertaining to property, banking, fiscal management and the division among various policy fields? We provide a functional overview of the Hungarian model of the market applying the varieties of capitalism framework. How far did it all succeed? The two hypotheses to be tested are (a) that incremental change translated into a new quality in 2010–18; and (b) that it were the uniquely favourable external conditions rather than institutional and policy innovations that explain less than exceptional outcomes.
  • Governing Fintech and Fintech as Governance: The Regulatory Sandbox, Riskwashing, and Disruptive Social Classification

    Brown, Eric; Piroska, Dóra; Department of International Relations (Taylor & Francis, 2022)
    This article evaluates the sandbox approach as a regulatory answer to the challenges financial technology brings to finance and social relations. Taking fintech as a sociotechnological phenomenon embedded in discourses of solutionism and innovation, we show that the regulatory sandbox accepts these discourses. Instead of containing fintech, the sandbox is designed in a way that advances riskwashing of fintech even if it is disguised as risktaming. Next, we demonstrate fintech’s problematic nature that regulation should control. First, we propose that through its information processing capacity, fintech accelerates the transition from bank-based to market-based finance. Second, we demonstrate that fintech as part of a fintech-financialization apparatus has catallactic and value-extracting governance effects. Third, inserting the fintech-financialization apparatus into Fourcade and Healy’s argument on the social stratification effect of the data-driven economy, we argue that it also has a socially disruptive potential. We critique the regulatory sandbox for being a facilitator to this process and recommend increasing the number and power of veto players and veto points in complex regulatory regimes.
  • Rituals of world politics: On (visual) practices disordering things

    Aalberts, Tanja; Kurowska, Xymena; Leander, Anna; Mälksoo, Maria; Heath-Kelly, Charlotte; Lobato, Luisa; Svensson, Ted; Department of International Relations (Taylor & Francis, 2020)
    Rituals are customarily muted into predictable routines aimed to stabilise social orders and limit conflict. As a result, their magic lure recedes into the background, and the unexpected and disruptive elements are downplayed. Our collaborative contribution counters this move by foregrounding rituals of world politics as social practices with notable disordering effects. We engage a series of ‘world pictures’ to show the worlding and disruptive work enacted in rituals designed to sustain the sovereign exercise of violence and war, here colonial treatymaking, state commemoration, military/service dog training, cyber-security podcasts, algorithmically generated maps, the visit of Prince Harry to a joint NATO exercise and border ceremonies in India, respectively. We do so highlighting rituals’ immanent potential for disruption of existing orders, the fissures, failures and unforeseen repercussions. Reappraising the disordering role of ritual practices sheds light on the place of rituals in rearticulating the boundaries of the political. Rituals can generate dissensus and re-divisions of the sensible rather than only impose a consensus by policing the boundaries of the political, as Rancière might phrase it. Our images are essential to the account. They help disinterring the fundamentals and ambiguities of the current worldings of security, capturing the affective atmosphere of rituals.
  • Stalled by design: New paradoxes in the European Union’s single financial market

    Piroska, Dóra; Epstein, Rachel A.; Department of International Relations (Taylor & Francis, 2023)
    Since the US financial meltdown in 2008 that sparked a Eurozone crisis, the European Union has introduced new financial market initiatives that were intended to advance integration, bring stability, and create shared prosperity for EU members. Innovations included Banking Union, Capital Markets Union, and the European Fund for Strategic Investments. We find, however, that tensions between supranationalization and retaining national control in institutional design diminished incentives for full participation, particularly among the EU’s East Central European members. Uneven levels of foreign bank ownership between East and West Europe, disparities in the depth of capital markets, and varying institutional capacity have often led Eastern member states to opt out. Paradoxically, initiatives intended to advance integration and overcome developmental inequalities have instead compounded national fragmentation and restricted pathways to catching up for some of the EU’s less prosperous members. Thus, European financial integration was stalled by design.
  • Systemic Governance

    Csaba, László; Dallago, Bruno; Casagrande, Sara; Department of International Relations (RoutledgeLondon, 2022)
    This chapter, being halfway between abstract economic theory and policy analysis, addresses one of the most contested issues in comparative economic studies, namely the role of human deliberation versus spontaneity at the macroeconomic level. To arrive at new insights, it adopts a cross-regional perspective and speculates if the counter-intuitive practices of China, based on pragmatism and experimentation, trial and error, have indeed been superior to social engineering, as practiced in various forms across Europe. It also highlights the limitations to theoretical generalizations, i.e., making claims that remain valid at any time and any place, as mainstream economics suggests of its own insights.
  • Economic policy: Path dependence and path creation (1989-2015)

    Csaba, László; Morrys, Matthias; Department of International Relations (RoutledgeLondon, 2017)

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