EU4A5      Half Unit
People and Politics in Europe

This information is for the 2023/24 session.

Teacher responsible

Prof Christopher Anderson CBG 6.05


This course is available on the MSc in Culture and Conflict in a Global Europe, MSc in Culture and Conflict in a Global Europe (LSE & Sciences Po), MSc in European and International Public Policy, MSc in European and International Public Policy (LSE and Bocconi), MSc in European and International Public Policy (LSE and Sciences Po), MSc in International Migration and Public Policy, MSc in International Migration and Public Policy (LSE and Sciences Po), MSc in Political Economy of Europe, MSc in Political Economy of Europe (LSE and Fudan) , MSc in Political Economy of Europe (LSE and Sciences Po) and MSc in Political Sociology. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

This course has a limited number of places (it is controlled access). In previous years we have been able to provide places for all students that apply but that may not continue to be the case.

Course content

In this course, we will discuss how people engage with politics – what and how do Europeans think about politics (political attitudes and public opinion) and how and why do they participate in the political process (political behavior)? In addition, we will explore how a person's political opinions influence their political behavior. That is, we will explore how and why people participate in democratic politics, and how conventional and unconventional citizen participation influences the political process. We will concentrate primarily on the politics of Europe and will pay attention to older and newer European democracies as well as the European Union.


This course is delivered through a combination of lectures and seminars totalling a minimum of 25 hours across Winter Term. This course includes a reading week in Week 6 of Winter Term.

Formative coursework

The formative coursework will take the form of a research design outline (500 words), a brief oral presentation, and a reaction paper (500 words).

Indicative reading

  • Alesina, Alberto, Rafael Di Tella, and Robert MacCulloch. 2004. “Inequality and Happiness: Are Europeans and Americans Different?” Journal of Public Economics 88 (9–10): 2009–2042.
  • Anderson, Christopher J. 2007. “The End of Economic Voting? Contingency Dilemmas and the Limits of Democratic Accountability.” Annual Review of Political Science 10: 271-96.
  • Anderson, Christopher J. 2009. “Nested Citizens: Macropolitics and Microbehavior in Comparative Politics.” In Comparative Politics: Rationality, Culture, and Structure, ed. Mark I. Lichbach and Alan S. Zuckerman. New York: Cambridge University Press.
  • Dalton, Russell J. 2013. Citizen Politics: Public Opinion and Political Parties in Advanced Industrial Democracies. London: Sage.
  • Kumlin, Staffan. 2007. “The Welfare State: Values, Policy Preferences, and Performance Evaluations,” in Oxford Handbook of Political Behavior, ed. Russell J. Dalton and Hans-Dieter Klingemann. New York: Oxford University Press.
  • Svallfors, Stefan. 2006. The Moral Economy of Class: Class and Attitudes in Comparative Perspective. Palo Alto: Stanford University Press.


Essay (100%, 5000 words) in the period between WT and ST.

Key facts

Department: European Institute

Total students 2022/23: 21

Average class size 2022/23: 10

Controlled access 2022/23: Yes

Lecture capture used 2022/23: Yes (MT)

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Course selection videos

Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.

Personal development skills

  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Problem solving
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication
  • Application of numeracy skills