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One Day Conference

                       Greek Politics in Crisis: Challenges to the Open Society

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Date  Friday, 29 November 2013
Venue Shaw Library, Old Building, LSE
Time One-day Conference

Kevin Featherstone, Eleftherios Venizelos Professor of Contemporary Greek Studies & Professor of European Politics; Director, Hellenic Observatory, LSE

Heather Grabbe, Director, Open Society European Policy Institute

One day conference organised by the Hellenic Observatory, LSE and the Open Society European Policy Institute, Brussels

For more information on the Open Society European Policy Institute click here|

The depth of the economic recession in Greece inevitably poses major political and social issues. On a scale comparable to that of the Wall Street crash of 1929, and at a level not experienced by any other EU member since 1945, Greece has grappled with turning around its economy. Indeed, it has already achieved the biggest fiscal adjustment seen in Europe since the end of the Second World War.

But, the street protests, the loss of support by the established political parties, and the public disillusionment are evidence of the severe strains on the political system. And the crisis has brought into much sharper relief some of the underlying problems of the polity, built up over decades. In this conference, we will explore the crisis impacts on politics and political activity, from the grass-roots to the state institutions, in order to explore the ramifications for Greece’s future path.

Moreover, the crisis has brought into much sharper relief some of the underlying problems of the polity, built up over decades. Political parties have lost the trust of voters, and politically motivated violence has become an urgent issue. Social tensions around migration have been stoked up by political actors, while the public administration is struggling to reform its methods of handling asylum and migration.

Can Greece exit the crisis with a more open and inclusive society, a state more responsive to future needs, and with new forms of political leadership?

Kevin FeatherstoneProfessor Kevin Featherstone, Director, Hellenic Observatory, LSE

GrabbeHeather Grabbe, Director, Open Society European Policy Institute

SESSION 1: Is this ‘An Age of Extremes?’  Interpreting the new electoral behaviour

Protest, revenge, or belief? Explaining extremist voting in Greece
Vassiliki Georgiadou,
Associate Professor of Political Science, Panteion University

The banality of Golden Dawn support
Sofia Vasilopoulou
, Lecturer in Politics, University of York
Daphne Halikiopoulou, Lecturer in Comparative Politics, University of Reading

Paul Taggart
, Professor and Head of Politics; Jean Monnet Chair, University of Sussex





SESSION 2 : An age of resistance? Street protests and a new civil society

Is Greece a modern country? A critical reading of Greek protests
Anna Triandafyllidou,
Professor, Global Governance Programme, Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, European University Institute, Florence, Italy

Rage and Protest: The case of the Greek piazza movement
Marilena Simiti
, Assistant Professor, Department of European and International Relations University of Piraeus & Hellenic Observatory Visiting Fellow

Politics in the Age of Resistance
Costas Douzinas
, Professor of Law; Director of the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities, University of London

Kenneth Newton
, Emeritus Professor of Comparative Politics, University of Southampton
Mary Kaldor, Professor of Global Governance; Director of the Civil Society and Human Security Research Unit, LSE


SESSION 3: The state as a block to the open society

Public administration and the break-up of the public sphere
Aristos Doxiadis
, Venture Capital Professional, Partner at Openfund

Looking at the open society from two different angles: as a member of an NGO and from a government post
Angelos Syrigos
, Assistant Professor of International Law & Foreign Policy, Panteion University; Board Member, Transparency International

Catherine Fieschi
, Director, Counterpoint


CONCLUSIONS:  Future leadership - what visions for the open society?

An open discussion with participants from previous sessions chaired by Professor Kevin Featherstone

Julien Etienne, Post-Doctoral Fellow, Centre for Analysis Risk & Regulation CARR, LSE
Maro Pantazidou, Independent researcher and facilitator; Lead Advisor, Learning and Accountability, Amnesty International
Marilena Simiti, Assistant Professor, Department of European and International Relations University of Piraeus 








Click here for the Conference Video


Click here for the conference programme|