The Politics of the Economic Crisis
About the Project
In the fall of 2009, PIIRS launched the first phase of The Politics of the Economic Crisis research cluster. Principal investigators and coordinators of the research cluster are Larry Bartels, the Donald E. Stokes Professor of Public and International Affairs; Jonas Pontusson, professor of comparative politics at University of Geneva; and Nancy Bermeo, the Nuffield Professor of Comparative Politics at Oxford University
The project focuses on exploring and explaining how a variety of democratic political systems respond to the current economic crisis. The investigation seeks to account for similarities and differences in the policies adopted by different countries and to trace the economic and political effects of those policies. The project will:
- examine the role of public opinion and elections in shaping policy responses to the crisis
- examine inequality as a potential explanation for differences in policy and as a potential outcome of differences in policy
- build an interdisciplinary dialogue between history, economics, and other social sciences
The core of the project will be a sustained conversation and collaboration among the three principal investigators—political scientists with strongly overlapping scholarly interests but largely distinct professional networks and expertise. Scholars from around the globe will convene at Princeton and Oxford University for conferences, seminars, and colloquia that explore government responses to the crisis; the implications of the crisis for varieties of capitalism; and the implications of the crisis for public attitudes, political participation, and partisan politics.
The second year of the project, 2010–11, is a residence year for professors Bartels, Bermeo, and Pontusson. During this phase, the professors will work on an edited volume, pursue their own research, and host short-term visitors for a biweekly colloquium, in addition to convening a conference and interdisciplinary seminars.
Larry Bartels is the Donald E. Stokes Professor of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University and director of the Woodrow Wilson School’s Center for the Study of Democratic Politics. He has written extensively on American electoral politics, public opinion, and representation. His most recent book, Unequal Democracy: The Political Economy of the New Gilded Age (2008), received the American Political Science Association’s Gladys M. Kammerer Award for the year’s best book on U.S. national policy and the Leon D. Epstein Award for an outstanding contribution to scholarship on political organizations and parties. -- Ph.D. University of California-Berkeley.
Nancy Bermeo is the Nuffield Professor of Comparative Politics and director of the Center for the Study of Inequality and Democracy at the University of Oxford. She is the author and editor of nine books on comparative politics and public policy, including Unemployment in the New Europe (2001) and Ordinary People in Extraordinary Times: The Citizenry and the Collapse of Democracy (2003), which received the Best Book Award from the APSA’s Democratization section. -- Ph.D. Yale University.
Jonas Pontusson is a professor of comparative politics at the University of Geneva. A leading scholar of comparative political economy and the welfare state, he previously taught at Cornell and Princeton. He has been a visiting scholar at the Russell Sage Foundation, the Swedish Collegium for Advanced Study in Social Sciences, and Nuffield College, Oxford. He received the American Political Science Association’s Gladys M. Kemmerer Award for Inequality and Prosperity: Social Europe versus Liberal America (2005) and the Heinz Eulau Award for “The American Welfare State in Comparative Perspective” (Perspectives in Politics, 2006). -- Ph.D. University of California-Berkeley.