Dr Robin Archer

Dr Robin Archer

Associate Professor (Reader) in Political Sociology

Department of Sociology

020 7955 7944
Room No
STC S114a
Key Expertise
Labour movements, Labour politics, Social movements

About me

Robin Archer teaches political sociology at the LSE, and is the director of the postgraduate programme in that subject. His first degree was in physics, mathematics and philosophy at Sydney University where he received the University Medal. A Commonwealth Scholarship enabled him to come to England to do a DPhil in politics at Balliol College, Oxford. Prior to coming to the LSE, he taught political sociology, comparative government and political theory for over a decade at Oxford University, where he was the Fellow in Politics at Corpus Christi College.

The study of labour movements and labour politics are a central focus of Dr Archer's research interests. In addition, he has a longstanding and continuing interest in a wide range of other social movements, in questions of social and political philosophy (particularly questions concerning liberalism, socialism, freedom and democracy), in questions of comparative political economy (particularly concerning industrial relations, and the development of welfare states), in questions of political culture (particularly those concerning the impact of liberal, racial and religious ideas), and in the effects of political institutions. He has specialist knowledge of a range of European countries, as well as of India, Australia, and, especially, the United States.

Dr Archer is currently working on new projects in two general areas. The first concerns the roots of American political culture, and the second concerns the future of the left. He is also interested in exploring the potential of comparative and historical approaches to the study of politics and sociology.

Dr Archer has been a Visiting Fellow at Princeton and Columbia Universities in the United States, at Sydney University in Australia, at the Jawaharlal Nehru University and Delhi University in India, and at the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna. He has been invited to speak at many universities and research institutes in the United States, Europe, Australia, India and Africa, and has been commissioned to do research for international and government bodies, as well as for independent think tanks, in a number of countries

Selected Publications


The Conscription Conflict and the Great War.  Monash University Press, 2016

Why Is There No Labor Party in the United States? Princeton University Press, 2008

Economic Democracy. Oxford University Press, 1995

Out of Apathy: Voices of the New Left 30 Years on. Verso, 1989

 Archer1  Archer2  Archer3  Conscription Conflict

Articles and Book Chapters

Stopping War and Stopping Conscription: Australian Labour's response to World War I in comparative perspective.  Labour History Review, 106, pp. 43-67, 2014

Free Riding on Revolution: conservatism and social change. In: Go, Julian (ed.), Political Power and Social Theory, 23. Emerald Books, Bingley, UK, pp. 3-26, 2012

Seymour Martin Lipset and Political Sociology. British Journal of Sociology, 61 (s1). pp. 43-52, 2010

American Liberalism and Labor Politics. Labour History, vol 92, 2007

Secularism and Sectarianism in India and the West. Economy and Society, vol 30, no 3, 2001 

Does Repression Help to Create Labor Parties? Studies in American Political Development, vol 15, no 2, 2001 

Unions, Courts and Parties: Judical Repression and Labor Politics in Late Nineteenth Century America. Politics and Society, vol 26, no 3, 1998

The Unexpected Emergence of Australian Corporatism, in Jukka Pekkarinen et al, eds, Social Corporatism: a Superior System? Oxford University Press, 1992