School of Politics and International Relations

POL266 Comparative European Politics II – Issues and Performance

(POL266B - Spring)

Level: 5

Semester: B

Credit Value: 15

Module Convenor: Dr Brendan O'Duffy

Overlap: None

Pre-requisite: None

Compulsory for: Semi-compulsory for L202, L20Y

Associate Availability: Full year and Spring only


The political map of contemporary Europe is changing rapidly and fundamentally, as the traditional boundaries between East and West and between domestic and international governance break down. This module aims to introduce the analysis of democratic performance on major issues affecting contemporary European democracies. Continent’s politics - one rooted in a comparative rather than a country-by-country approach. After reviewing ontological and epistemological foundations in comparative political science and setting the historical and socio-economic context, the module focuses on comparative analysis of prominent political issues facing European states (including mediatisation of politics, interest groups, social movements, immigration and multi-culturalism, gender and politics, new radical right challenges to established party systems) before concluding with a comparative analysis of  democratic performance as measured by objective and subjective indicators of government outputs.

Assessment: 1 x 2500 word essay (50%) and 2 hour exam (50%)